Festa de São João (St John's Festival)

23 - 24 Jun 2018
Porto, Portugal

Hammer-hitting, firework-exploding and all-night dancing fun can be had at Porto's Festa de São João. One of Europe's biggest and wildest street parties.

  • When? 23rd - 24th June 2018
  • Where? Porto, Portugal
  • Price: Free

Love hurts they say. And when love comes knocking at Festa de São João in Porto, it comes by means of a hammer to the head. Translated as the Festival of St John, this knockout event is truly one-of-a-kind: crazy traditions such as hitting loved ones or even attractive strangers over the head with squeaky plastic hammers epitomise the wacky party spirit.

Considered one of Europe's biggest street parties, Festa de São João brings thousands flocking to embrace the party atmosphere. It's a celebration that honours the patron saint of the city, John the Baptist, although the late-night partying, dancing and firework displays over the river at Praça da Ribeira largely mask the event's religious context.

Porto is a beautiful city to experience Portugese culture and the Festa de São João is one of the best times of the year to enjoy it with the smell of smoky barbecues and the sound of live music lining the cobbled streets. Once the sun sets, the party continues with many heading for the coastline. A huge beach party evolves out of the night's festivities with locals dancing and drinking around crackling bonfires until the early hours. Some even challenge one another to jump over the largest flames.

They say love will hit when you least expect it, but we predict your love affair with Porto will begin in June, with a good old whack to the head.

  • Get there: Aeroporto Francisco Sá Carneiro (OPO) is the closest to the city. Get around using the metro.
  • Stay: Book accommodation north of the river for a short walk home after the festivities have ended.

*We do our very best to verify the dates of our events but please check with the official event provider before booking your flights. We would hate for you to be disappointed!