Festival of The Knights of St. Peter in Sao Miguel

ef209-12525443_10204739926291872_3991688300627118303_oThe festival of the knights of St. Peter or otherwise known as “Cavalhadas de Sao Pedro” is one of the oldest festivals in the Azores and originates in the county of Riberia Grande in the town of Ribeira Seca. Inspired by medieval tournaments with the knights of the region most notably the Counts of Ribeira Grande this is one of the most colourful festivals that takes place during the summer.0a4ed-12633558_10204739926331873_812437503525623015_oThis annual event takes places at the end of every June and has done so for over a century. A beautiful show where hundreds of horses and their riders are in colourful garments with flowers adoring the horses as they parade down the streets with all the bells and whistles that go along with a royal parade. The colors are outstanding and the festival brings locals from all over the island to celebrate in this ancient tradition.76342-12552930_10204739652365024_9044826862673800507_nThe route starts at the 17th Century manor home “Mafoma-Corte Real” which has remained in the same family since it was built-in 1748. The elaborate garden is opened up for the event where the horses all start here by performing a show. After the show at the noble residence the horses begin to proceed down the parade route to the church of St. Peter’s where they pay tribute to the patron saint of the town. The city of Ribeira Seca shines during this celebration as all the homes and streets are decorated for this special occasion with local plants and flowers with some even hanging white linens from the windows of the homes along the parade route. All these are ancient traditions that have passed on for generations on the island and is part of the unique island culture here.ab4f6-12646855_10204739662365274_2881149385264721650_oThe town square hosts countless events throughout the day and into late in evening with the streets all lit up and are filled with residents, tourists and vendors. The food from the vendors is generally very good with a wide variety of local island treats. The food is traditional steak or pork sandwiches marinated Portuguese style which taste outstanding and of course you will see line ups of people waiting to get their hands on the famous Portuguese pork sandwich, in a hot crusty Portuguese roll. The flavors do not compare to anything outside of Azores as the ingredients and water in the bread is much different and is truly an experience when at the local festivals such as this one.2d261-stptrs

 

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