It has a total population of 123,831 and an area of 378.9 km². The city itself has a population of 20,625. With 89 parishes, it is the municipality with the highest number of parishes in the country.
The municipal holiday is May 3.
The town's famous symbol is a rooster, in Portuguese called o galo de Barcelos. The legend says that a rich man made 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 cock and the pilgrim said: If I am innocent, this cock will crow three times. When the pilgrim was about to be hanged the cock crowed. The judge release the pilgrim. The story ends a few years later when the pilgrim returned and made a statue over the event.