Barcelos supporting handicrafts through creative tourism during the pandemic

The Municipality of Barcelos has been supporting the handicraft – one of the identity factors that most contribute to the international recognition and distinction in the field of pop art and creative tourism (Creative City of UNESCO, Creative Friendly Destination and Sustainable Tourism European Award).

Handicraft and its creative community are, to Barcelos, a differential factor and an essential element of attractiveness and national and international notoriety, like in no other Municipality in Portugal.

Concerning national and international responsibilities that the municipality carries in the Creative cluster, it was decided to put forward a set of measures and activities to support this specific sector, such as:


  • Creative Workshops:

The Tourism and Handicraft Office of the Municipality promotes, by appointment, workshops of creative experiences of the different arts and traditional crafts of the municipality with the collaboration of artisans of different artistic expressions, for audiences of all ages.
We send below the link of one of the last creative workshops held in the Medieval Tower, a workshop of Rooster Painting with the participation of a local craftsman, with a group from tourism operator Explore Iberia – See here.


  • Barcelos creates a support pack to protect the sustainability of the Creative sector with handicraft purchases

In this regard, the Municipality moves forward with a process of acquisition of artworks to each craftsman/artisanal production unit that lives exclusively from craftsmanship income.
The aim is to reinforce the support for the artisan community that lives exclusively from crafts and has no other source of income.
These are measures that Barcelos, as Creative City of UNESCO, presents in order to, in the short and medium-term, contribute to the sustainability of the Creativity Cluster, creative tourism, and handicraft and increase the ratios of sustainability of the sector agents. By the other hand, the purchased artworks will serve as a product of promotion, and the provided supports in the framework of OSAC (Operational Support to Artisanal Community) and PISHB (Promotional Incentive System to the Handicraft of Barcelos) will be used as a reinforcement of creative tourism and promotion of the same territory, in a very centered commitment and to make Creativity an argument of sustainable development.

  • Micro-fairs:

The Municipality of Barcelos promoted a cycle of handicraft micro-fairs, every Thursday of August, at Largo da Porta Nova, which aims to supply the effects that the Covid-19 pandemic had one of the economic activities that suffered most from the pandemic, handicrafts. As Barcelos is a territory with a very strong cultural and ethnological identity, with a large number of artisans and a wide variety of arts and crafts, of which, for its importance, pottery, this initiative aims to support and promote this sector and contribute to the economic increase of its agents. Each fair consists of six artisans, on a rotating basis, covering as many artisans as possible. The artisans represent their work live, drawing the attention of the thousands of people who pass through the city and at the Weekly Market of Barcelos. Handicrafts are an integral part of Barcelos’ culture, inspired by the most varied themes of culture and society and constitute a manifestation of the unique creativity of the artisan community, which makes Barcelos, in this context, one of the main references at the national level. The security conditions for carrying out the initiative were articulated and obtained the agreement of the health authorities.

  • Promotional Video – “Discovering Barcelos”

The Barcelos Municipality launched a video entitled “Descobrir Barcelos” (Discovering Barcelos), new communicative support with the purpose of divulging the municipality of Barcelos in all its splendor. This will be a new way of making Barcelos and several more unknown places in the municipality known to those who visit us. Video.

  • Tower by Night

During the Saturdays of August, the Medieval Tower was open to the public at night. This activity gave the opportunity to experience this monument in a completely different way, always complying with all the hygiene and safety rules for visiting the space. The activity contributed to a greater impetus of the tourist and cultural dimension of the city of Barcelos at the time of the full pandemic, opening doors to a unique experience, not only for the local community but also for all those who choose Barcelos as a focal point for their visit.

  • World Tourism Day: 

An attractive program of creative tourism experiences will be held on September 26 and 27th, within the World Tourism Day celebration.

Stay tuned to discover all the details!


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