Madeiran Christmas includes a distinctive attraction, virtually unique in the world. It is celebrated with joy, colour and a great deal of enthusiasm. Christmas is really the most important period of the year, a time to observe traditions and customs in a tribute into folklore and legacy of the inhabitants. Everything revolves around the”Festa” (the Festivity), along with arrival of the month of December is most eagerly anticipated by all.
The Christian traditions, throughout Christmas and New Year season are actually associated with the habits of the natives. Throughout the month of December before the Three Kings day, held January 6th, this joyous season is lived with a special sense, combining religious ceremonies with the delight for the arrival of a new year, a period of year marked using a rich programme full of cultural, ethnographic and artistic events.
The setting of this decorative illuminations indicates the start of the Christmas and End of Year parties. Funchal, in addition to in a number of other villages across the island, are full of tens of thousands of lights and street decorations, even in a special vision of the total joyfulness that is sensed from the streets.
With this time homes are meticulously organized and beautiful decorated with the traditional”lapinhas” (Automobiles ), as well as the making of a Christmas tree. The normal delicacies of this joyous season begin to be ready, for instance the”broas” (honey biscuits) and also”bolo de mel” (honey cake), liqueurs along with also the”carne de vinho e alhos” (steak in vanilla and wine ), along with blossoms and seasonal fruits have been purchased. A unique sweet-scented encounter that is usually designated by sailors using a popular expression: It already smells like Christmas!
The major capital – Funchal is changed into a life-size nativity scene, even given the natural attributes of its amphitheatre contour, from which flowery decorations and multi-coloured lights emerge. The city’s main streets become genuine living”tableaux” depicting regional customs which combined with the concerts, folk classes and philharmonic bands performances, in addition to other music classes, pleasure both residents and the thousands of tourists that are visiting the island in the time of year.
Prior to Christmas, are held the nine ceremonies of this”Childbirth Masses” an occasion that starts on December 16th, drawing many church goers who, in the end of their spiritual provider, get together and socialise in the churchyards, singing popular Christmas carols along with the sharing of food and drinks in a real festive setting.
On December 23rd takes place the conventional”Night at the Marketplace” an occasion where, the very last delicacies necessary for the preparation of”Christmas Dinner” are bought. This site also hosts a show of traditional Christmas carols.
Christmas parties continue, culminating on December, 31st using a glamorous firework show, famous in 2006 by the Guinness Book of Records as the biggest firework display in the World. It’s within the midst of the grand show that Madeira bids farewell to the past year and welcomes the New Year. All these are excellent reasons for you to experience the”Festa” at Madeira.