Barcelos, Portugal

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The entrance to the city of Barcelos coming from the parish of Barcelinhos
The entrance to the city of Barcelos coming from the parish of Barcelinhos
Flag of Barcelos
Coat of arms of Barcelos
Coat of arms
Coordinates: 41°31′N 8°37′W / 41.517°N 8.617°W / 41.517; -8.617Coordinates: 41°31′N 8°37′W / 41.517°N 8.617°W / 41.517; -8.617
Country Portugal
Intermunic. comm.Cávado
 • PresidentMiguel Costa Gomes (PS)
 • Total378.90 km2 (146.29 sq mi)
 • Total120,391
 • Density320/km2 (820/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC±00:00 (WET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+01:00 (WEST)

Barcelos (Portuguese pronunciation: [bɐɾˈsɛluʃ] (About this soundlisten)) is a city and a municipality in Braga District in the Minho Province, in the north of Portugal. The population in 2011 was 120,391,[1] in an area of 378.90 km2.[2] With 60 parishes, it is the municipality with the highest number of parishes in the country. It is one of the growing municipalities in the country, and is well known by its textile and adobe industries, as well as its horseback riding events and "figurado" style of pottery,[3] which are comical figurines with accentuated features of farmers, folk musicians, and nativity scene characters.

Barcelos is part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network as a Crafts and Folk Art City.[4]


Originally a Roman settlement, it expanded and became the seat of the First Duke of Bragança in the 15th century. The palace of the Dukes of Bragança was destroyed by an earthquake in 1755 and is now an open-air museum.

Galo de Barcelos, often used as a symbol of Portugal

The town's famous symbol is a rooster, in Portuguese called o galo de Barcelos ("the Rooster of Barcelos"). One of the many versions of this legend goes that a rich man threw a big party. When the party was over, the rich man noticed that his sterling cutlery was stolen by a guest. He accused a pilgrim and let him go to court. He protested his innocence, but the judge didn't believe him. The judge was about to eat a roasted rooster when the pilgrim said: "If I am innocent, this rooster will crow three times." When the pilgrim was about to be lynched, the rooster crowed. The judge released the pilgrim. The story ends a few years later when the pilgrim returned and made a statue over the event. The town remains on the Portuguese Way path of the Camino de Santiago.


Administratively, the municipality is divided into 60 civil parishes (freguesias):[5]

Notable citizens[edit]

  • João Garcia de Guilhade, a famous Portuguese trobadour during the 13th century, was from Milhazes.
  • Pedro Afonso, Count of Barcelos, an illegitimate son of King Denis of Portugal and the second count of Barcelos.
  • António Pires de Lima (born 1936), a famous lawyer and former bastonário of the Portuguese Bar Association (Portuguese: Ordem dos Advogados) and father of former Minister of Culture Isabel Pires de Lima, and of businessman and former politician António Pires de Lima, was from Barcelos.[6]
  • Portuguese prime-minister Francisco de Sá Carneiro, whose father, José Gualberto Chaves Marques de Sá Carneiro, and paternal family were from Barcelos.
  • Luís "Greyy" Perestrelo, professional Overwatch player for the Paris Eternal
  • João "maniaKK" Ferreira, professional Smite player


Barcelos is home to Gil Vicente Futebol Clube (football) and Óquei Clube de Barcelos (rink hockey).

Twin Cities[edit]


  1. ^ Instituto Nacional de Estatística
  2. ^ Eurostat Archived October 7, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ "15 Best Things to Do in Barcelos (Portugal)". The Crazy Tourist. 2017-07-14. Retrieved 2020-02-11.
  4. ^ "Barcelos | Creative Cities Network". Retrieved 2018-10-03.
  5. ^ Diário da República. "Law nr. 11-A/2013, pages 552 21-24" (pdf) (in Portuguese). Retrieved 17 July 2014.
  6. ^ Ordem dos Advogados Archived March 3, 2012, at the Wayback Machine