Special days and Dutch holidays
- 19 July 2013
- 09 May 2014
While a number of public holidays still reflect the Christian roots of the country -- such as Christmas, Easter, Ascension Day (Hemelvaartsdag) and Pentecost (Pinksteren) -- some days are uniquely Dutch. Here you can read all about the Dutchest of the Dutch holidays.
King’s Day (Koningsdag)Koningsdag, or King’s Day, on 27 April (or celebrated on 26 April if the 27th is a Sunday) is a national holiday in the Netherlands. It started as a celebration of the Dutch monarchy.
Remembrance Day & Liberation Day: 4 and 5 MayThe Netherlands has its own way of commemorating the Second World War and celebrating the country's liberation from five years of occupation.
Vlaggetjesdag (Flag Day)The Dutch passion for raw herring is central to the country’s culture and entwined with its history and customs. The herring takes centre stage during Vlaggetjesdag in Scheveningen.
Dutch Veterans' Day: last Saturday of JuneThe country pays homage to veterans who served the Netherlands in wars or international peacekeeping operations on the last Saturday of June closest to 29 June. The date was symbolically chosen because it was the birthday of the late Prince Bernhard who was the father of Queen Beatrix and a war veteran himself.
Indisch Monument and Remembrance CeremonyA remembrance ceremony is organised at the Indisch Monument in The Hague each year on 15 August to commemorate the Dutch victims of the Second World War in Asia.
Prince’s Day (Prinsjesdag)Every third Tuesday in September is Prinsjesdag (Prince’s Day), the opening of Dutch parliament. A festive day, children in The Hague are free from school so they may watch the procession of the Gouden Koets (Golden Coach). The King is driven in the Gouden Koets from Noordeinde Palace to the Ridderzaal (Hall of Knights) in the Binnenhof, which houses the Dutch Parliament.
Sinterklaas: 5 DecemberAlthough 5 December is not an official holiday in the Netherlands, many parents traditionally leave work early so that they can celebrate 'pakjesavond' (evening when presents are given) with their children. Presents are ingeniously wrapped, and are therefore called surprises. Traditionally these presents are accompanied by a poem penned by St. Nicholas.
You can find a complete overview of the public holidays in the Netherlands on Wikipedia.