Mar 12 - Mar 12 2022

The Caretos of Podence

The Caretos de Podence are the manifestation of an ancestral tradition from the small village of Podence, Macedo de Cavaleiros, in northern Portugal. It is a tradition that combines profane, magical and religious elements whose origins are impossible to date back.

The Caretos are masked men who, during the Carnival, wear rudimentary masks made of either leather or ordinary tin, and colourful costumes made of wool. The colours of their garments and masks – red, black, yellow, green – contrast with the darkness of winter time, and their presence is announced by the sound of the cowbells they carry around their waist and on their shoulders.Reproducing a festive atmosphere that carries the audience back to ancient times and rituals, the Carnival of Podence differs from the parades characteristic of urban areas and is therefore considered as the most authentic carnival in Portugal.

The element “Winter Festivities: Carnival of Podence” was inscribed, on the 12th December 2019, on the Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity (UNESCO), during the 14th Intergovernmental Committee of the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage meeting, in Bogotá, Colombia.
  • Mar 12 - Mar 12 2022

  • Portugal Pavilion