Braga, a northern city in Portugal, is the perfect place to celebrate the «Holy Week», which is the week right before Easter: it features ancient processions like «Dos Passos», «Ecce Homo», Our Lord’s Burial or «Da Burrinha» (little donkey). The streets are coloured in purple and the smell of incense and candles is omnipresent.
«Domingo de Ramos» is the Sunday that happens seven days before Easter’s Sunday. It’s a tradition in which godchildren offer bouquets to their godparents (or other kinds for gifts) and then go together to the mass, where there is a Blessing of the Branches (in some parishes, there is a competition for the best or biggest one).
Then, on Easter, it’s the godfathers’ turn to reciprocate the gesture and to offer a gift to their godchildren. All homes open their doors to receive the «compass»: in some small villages, it’s still the priest and the acolytes who carry the image of resurrected Jesus Christ, and everyone kisses His feet.
The traditional food for Easter in Portugal is very rich: in the table set to receive the «compass», you may find the so-Portuguese «Serra da Estrela» cheese, Port wine, chocolate or colourful sugar almonds. For lunch, the most typical is the roasted lamb, and for dessert, sweet cakes like «pão-de-ló» or «folar», which is different depending on the region