Celebrating Valentine’s Day in Brazil

In many parts of the world, St. Valentine’s Day falls on February 14th. However, Valentine’s Day in Brazil is a little different.

Brazilians celebrate Dia dos Namorados, which translates to Sweetheart’s Day or Lover’s Day in Portuguese. To say “Happy Valentine’s Day” in Brazilian Portuguese, simply offer a warm “Feliz Dia dos Namorados.”

Brazilian Valentine’s Day does include romantic gifts, cards, and treats, but there are differences. For one thing, it falls on June 12th.

Wondering how Valentine’s Day is celebrated in Brazil? Read on.

Valentine's Day in Brazil

St. Anthony’s Day Eve

Valentine’s Day in Brazil falls on June 12th for a reason. On June 13th, Brazilians celebrate Saint Anthony’s Day. This feast day is for St. Anthony of Padua, who hailed from Portugal in the 13th century and is best known as the patron saint of recovering lost items.

In Brazil, St. Anthony is also a marriage saint, known for blessing young couples and being a matchmaker of sorts.

Another reason that Dia dos Namorados isn’t celebrated on February 14th in Brazil? Well, the traditional date for celebrating Saint Valentine also commonly falls during Carnaval, one of the biggest events of the year in Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, and elsewhere in the country.

Related: Valentine’s Day Around the World: 6 Traditions That Might Surprise You

Simpatias: Unique to Brazilian Valentine’s Day

Simpatias are all about seeking help from Saint Anthony.

On Dia dos Namorados, single women may seek the guidance of St. Anthony so that they can find a suitable husband. One such custom involves dipping an image of St. Anthony in water until the right partner walks into the woman’s life to propose.

Other examples of Brazilian simpatias include:

  • Placing a rose in a glass of water with a pinch of salt, and bathing in the water two days later.
  • Putting a love letter in a pot of basil, and then giving it to someone you like.

Treats for Dia dos Namorados

Valentine’s Day traditions usually involve sweets, and this is no different in Brazil.

Beijnhos mean “little kisses” in Portuguese. These coconut treats are “kissed” with clove.

The other love-themed sweet is a Bem Casado. These sandwich cookies are served at weddings and on Dia dos Namorados. After all, their name literally means “happily married.”

For more on traditional Brazilian dishes, snacks, and tasty treats, check out:

Valentine’s Day Greetings in Brazil

Besides “Feliz Dia dos Namorados,” try any of these loving phrases on June 12th. They’re also great for WhatsApp or long-distance chats if you find yourself far from your loved ones.

Eu te amo:I love you

Você é o amor da minha vida:You’re the love of my life

Você é a metade da minha laranja:You are my better half

Eu sou mais feliz com você, meu amor: I’m happier with you, my love

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