Heart-warming people

Usually, the Portuguese greet each other with two kisses. However, the gesture between two men is unusual, unless it is between members of the same family. Nevertheless, hugs are also very common among friends and family, followed by basic questions such as “how are you doing?”, “how are the children? And the family?” Touching is also frequent in simple conversation. Receiving a playful little spank while talking about something, especially during gossip with the neighbour that knows everything that is happening in the neighbourhood, will be a reality that people will have to get used to because it isn’t done with malice, it's just a form of expression.

Drinking coffee

Short coffee, full coffee, with “cheirinho”, decaf, or better saying a “bica”, whichever is more convenient. During the morning or after lunch, in any pastry shop, especially in the older ones, you can hear the noise of a machine frantically smashing coffee beans. Why? Well, people cannot live without their espresso, whether it's to wake up, to help the digestion process, or even as a pretext to meet friends. With sugar or with sweetener, coffee is a drink of extreme importance for Portuguese daily life. If you hear a Portuguese person complaining of headaches, it is better to offer them a cup of coffee, which will be more effective than a paracetamol.

Imperial or Fino?

A beer is also a joyous part of life for many Portuguese. Having a beer is not something you generally do during a break from work or in the morning but it is enjoyed by many after work. Beer is a favourite drink of those who finish their workday and need a moment of transition. Especially in the summer, it is common to see the Portuguese drinking an “imperial”, if it is in the south of the country, or a “fino”, if we are in the centre and north of Portugal.


The family is the pillar of Portuguese life. Family is indispensable, and it is even considered right to cancel plans with friends, if a family member has invited you after, for any reason. The Portuguese treat their family members, especially their elders, with great respect and gratitude. With special affection for their mother, their father and grandparents, the Portuguese manage to have beautiful relationships with these family members.

Time to eat

Eating is probably one of the favourite activities for the Portuguese. But not eating alone. Food is to be enjoyed with others, surrounded by cousins and that crazy aunt who starts to tell a few jokes after drinking a few glasses of wine. At a Portuguese table, there will be no shortage of food and drink, just as there will be no shortage of people saying “eat, darling, you're too skinny!” For the hosts, it is important to feel that the visitors are pleased, with everything including the food, the drink and the atmosphere. No one will leave the table while there is still food to eat and wine to drink, so guests must have their stomachs well prepared.


Entering a Portuguese establishment, like a café, will always be an experience. Some tables are reserved, without reservation. If it's a small cafe you can usually find the friendly employee, usually the boss who will be the friend of everyone who enters. They usually work alone and chat with clients, who have already become friends, as they discuss the news. Do not feel surprised, if without notice you are already chatting and have a few drinks paid for by the locals. The Portuguese love to talk, tell stories and offer what they can to whoever they like.

Visiting Portugal is an excellent experience that is sure to satisfy anyone. While everyone is different you can be sure to find common traits across the country shared by many of the Portuguese people.