“Viana Coração do Natal” more colorful and lively from December 8th to January 7th
“Viana Heart of Christmas” is once again the proposal to mark the festive period of Christmas and New Year’s Eve in Viana do Castelo, from December 8, 2023 to January 7, 2024. The Viana do Castelo City Council and the Association Companies from Viana do Castelo have once again joined forces to promote the city and traditional commerce during the most magical time of the year, with some new features designed for families and a new, colorful graphic image, with the “Afonsinho” mascot to appeal to the youngest. .
Praça Natal, ice rink, mini train, ecological carousel, Christmas Market, street entertainment and circus entertainment, concerts, children’s activities, nativity scenes and exhibitions make up a diverse program with 88 events and focused on the fifteen days leading up to Christmas. Once again, reusable cloth bags will be distributed to traditional Vivian businesses.
In a press conference to present the program, the Mayor, Luís Nobre, assured that the objective is to “create a better Christmas environment, promoting the city, our economic, cultural and musical agents, boosting the historic center”, ensuring that “We need locals and tourists on our streets”.
The President of the Viana do Castelo Business Association, Manuel Cunha Júnior, indicated that, at this time, the “Viana é Natal” competition is also taking place (which will award 11 prizes), which promotes the offer of vouchers to customers in local shops, the Christmas display competition for traditional commerce and also the sound of the streets, in actions “to please the residents and bring consumption and life to the traditional commerce of Viana”.
The Councilor for Culture, Manuel Vitorino, indicated that, this year, the Christmas decoration will be centered on Praça da República, Praça da Liberdade and the “hotspot” next to the Public Garden Bandstand, “very much aimed at families and focusing on children’s audience”, using local artists and institutions from the municipality.
Thus, Praça da República transforms itself, these days, into Praça Natal, with an allusive decoration that includes a mini train and a new carousel. The tent that will be installed in Praça da Liberdade will have space for an ice rink.
The Christmas Market is spread across these two main squares of the city, from the 8th to the 23rd of December, with more than 40 traders presenting different proposals for the typical gifts of the season, as well as exhibitors in the Public Garden. The Christmas Market will run from 4pm to 10pm from Monday to Thursday and on Sundays, and from 12pm to midnight on Fridays and Saturdays.
Once again, Avenida dos Combatentes da Grande Guerra presents rich and differentiated lighting. The 3D Christmas Tree is once again located in Jardim da Marina, offering a perfect setting with the Diocesan Sanctuary of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (temple-monument of Santa Luzia). The lighting of Avenida dos Combatentes and the Christmas tree includes daily multimedia shows that combine sound and light and promise to mark moments with family and friends.
Thus, the Avenue lights up for multimedia shows at 18:00, 19:00, 20:00, 21:00 and 22:00, from Monday to Friday, with reinforcement at 23:00 and 00:00 from Friday to Sunday. The Christmas Tree will have shows at 6:30 pm, 7:30 pm, 8:30 pm, 9:30 pm and 10:30 pm from Monday to Thursday, with reinforcements at 11:30 pm from Friday to Sunday.
From December 8th to January 7th, the ground floor of the Antigos Paços do Concelho hosts the exhibition “Craft Nativity Scenes in Viana do Castelo – 5th edition”, with traditional and contemporary proposals, executed using the most diverse materials by local artisans.
Throughout the main fifteen days of the program there will be varied entertainment on the city’s main streets. From December 11th to 15th and December 18th to 21st, from 12pm to 6pm, circus entertainment in the historic center; from the 8th to the 10th of December, the 16th and 17th and the 22nd and 23rd, street entertainment, from 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm. During the same period, daily, between 6:00 pm and 8:00 pm, Children’s Christmas Activities will be promoted for the youngest at Praça da República and Praça da Liberdade. The program also includes various entertainment at the Bandstand in the Public Garden on the weekends.
On the first day, the holiday of December 8th, O Bicho Papelão presents “Versos de Cacaracá”, a children’s Christmas show, in Jardim Público, from 3:30 pm, followed by street entertainment from 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm. The performance of the Tuna de Veteranos de Viana do Castelo takes place in Praça Rainha, at 6:00 pm, alongside the first day of the Christmas Market, from 12:00 pm to midnight. On the first night, the Bandstand of Jardim Público also hosts a concert with Dé Menor & Levi Roses, with a Moon Set, from 6pm. The night ends with Karaoke at Bandstand between 10pm and midnight.
On Saturday, December 9th, from 3:30 pm, Christmas Orchestra – Children’s Christmas show at the Bandstand (Jardim Público). The second night features Moon Set with DJ Lia Beat.
On the first Sunday, December 10th, from 3:30 pm, the proposal for the Public Garden includes “Learn with the Animals” – Children’s Christmas show at the Bandstand. At 5pm, the Praça da Liberdade tent hosts a musical moment by 5ª Jazz.
Throughout the week, from Monday to Thursday, the program includes the Christmas Market (from 4pm to 10pm), circus entertainment (12pm to 6pm) and children’s Christmas activities at Praça da República and Praça da Liberdade (6pm to 8pm) .
On Friday, the 15th, the end of the day includes, at 6:00 pm, a Moon Set with DJ Pedro Pena (90’s) at the Coreto do Jardim Público, with the night ending, in the same place, from 10:00 pm, with Karaoke at Bandstand.
On Saturday, November 16th, Feirão das Rabanadas (3:00 p.m.), Bicho Papelão with a children’s show “A Maior Flor do Mundo” at the Bandstand of Jardim Público (3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.), Moon Set with Di Ponti at the Bandstand (6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.), Christmas concert by the ARTEAM Symphony Orchestra and VianaVocale Choir at the Church of São Domingos (9pm). The Costume Museum hosts, at 9:30 pm, “Christmas Ball of the 60s, 70s and 80s”, with DJ Vítor Coutinho, in a free entry event with seasonal dress code and Christmas accessories. The day ends between 22:00 and 00:00 with Karaoke at the Bandstand.
On December 17th, at 11 am, street entertainment by Associação Musical Vila Nova Anha and Banda Escuteiros de Barroselas. At 3:00 pm, Santa Marta de Portuzelo Parish Choir, at the Misericórdia Church, and, at 5:30 pm, a new Christmas Concert by the ARTEAM Symphony Orchestra and VianaVocale Choir in São Domingos. The arrival of Santa Claus is scheduled for 4pm, at Praça da Liberdade, including “Christmas Carols”, by Aurea.
During Christmas week, from the 18th to the 22nd of December, from 3:00 pm to 8:00 pm from Monday to Friday, and from 10:00 am to 8:00 pm on Saturday, December 23rd, Aísca presents a Christmas products stand at Espaço Linha Norte. This week, from Monday to Thursday, the program remains the same: Christmas Market from 4pm to 10pm, circus entertainment at 12pm and 6pm and Children’s Christmas activities from 6pm to 8pm.
Friday, December 22nd, to prepare for the weekend, Moon Set with “O Simples Mente” at Bandstand (Public Garden) from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm, and Karaoke at Bandstand (Public Garden) from 10:00 pm to midnight.
On December 23rd, ZEPAM – Zé Pedro Associação Musical guarantees street entertainment from 11am. The São Silvestre Race once again invades the historic center at 4:30 pm this Saturday, with the ‘kids’ version, the 10 kilometer race at 5:30 pm. Then, Moon Set with DJ Zézé Gonçalves (80’s) at Bandstand from 6pm to 8pm, Sérgio Carvalhosa performs in the Praça da Liberdade tent at 9pm, ending Saturday with Karaoke at Bandstand from 10pm to midnight.
On November 24th, between 10am and 8pm, “Viana, Moscatel e Banana” in Praça da República promises to once again become a meeting point for friends and family, in an initiative by Santa Luzia FC.
On December 31st, at midnight, the usual fireworks will be launched over the Lima River and there will be New Year’s Eve to enter 2024 on the right foot. The 1st of January 2024 will be marked by the New Year’s Concert at Teatro Municipal Sá de Miranda, at 5pm, by the Braga Philharmonic Orchestra, with free entry.
Between the 3rd and 15th of December, the “Viana + Gift(s)” initiative challenges the people of Viana and local companies to make Christmas happier for 500 children, in an initiative by the Municipal Council of Viana do Castelo and the Social Services of Viana do Castelo Municipal Workers.