December is very special. From the first to the last day of this month we will be celebrating with joy and gracefulness in the streets of Funchal and around the island as well as in Porto Santo. We feel an atmosphere of happiness in the air. Colourful lights and  carols will bring glamour to the streets and buildings everywhere. Christmas is felt in everyone’s hearts.

From the 1st December to the 6th January – Christmas and New Year’s festivities

The month of the “Festa” as we call it starts with the street lightening in the towns’ centre on the 1st. The following week, a bank holiday, 8th, Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, the rest of the lamps in the surroundings are lit.

From 16th to 24th – Childbirth Masses (Missas do Parto)

From the 16th to the 24th, Christmas Eve, take place the Childbirth Masses. Nine days simbolizing nine months of Mary’s pregnancy very early, generaly before sunrise people gather in the churches for the so called “Missas do Parto” and after the mass join for a cheerful breakfast with neighbours, family or friends in a unique celebration many times with music and songs in honour to Jesus and Mary.

December 23rd – Market night

At night and even until after midnight a mass of people gather in the neighbourhood of the market for their last minute shopping and feast with friends or family. At the back of the building in the fish market area thoroughly decorated for the season one can listen to Christmas carols. Everyone can participate and all visitors are welcome. Many other village and towns organize their own Market night.

December 24th – Christmas Eve – Midnight Mass 

Every parish mantains the Christian tradition of this Mass sometimes at midnight other times at 11 p. m. or another depending on the priest’s calendar. We call it “Missa do Galo” and again would be pleased to have your presence.

December 31st – New Year’s Eve fireworks

This night would be in your memory for long. It is unique and the centre of Funchal as well as several spots in the surroundings will be filled with people long before midnight socializing and preparing for the special moment when fireworks blast up into the sky  all over the bay of Funchal in a heart bursting show that last for several minutes. On Porto Santo island as well.

But this is just a short summary of a long and great list of events that will take place on Madeira islands (Madeira & Porto Santo) along the month of December. Please stay with us and enjoy it to the utmost.

Please open the links hereunder to find out more about our events:

Visit Madeira

Download the PDF Program here (Please note that there was a change in the programme, as follows:  🕕⌚⏳
The three concerts on the 9th, 22nd and 30th december by Associação Amigos do Conservatório de Musica da Madeira, will be at 18:00 and not at 21:00.)

Madeira Cultura

Cultural Agenda

Maria do Monte Pereira (Official Tourist Guide)

Photo courtesy of Marla Castro (Official Tourist Guide)

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