Public Holidays in the Netherlands
Koningsdag (King's Day) is a national holiday in the Netherlands, during which the Dutch commemorate the King's birthday. The celebration has been in honor of King Willem-Alexander since 2014 and takes place on April 27th.
Previously, the holiday was known as Koninginnedag (Queen's Day) and was celebrated on April 30th, coinciding with Queen Juliana's birthday. Although born in January (January 31, 1938), Beatrix, Willem-Alexander's mother, maintained the late April celebration.
When 27 April falls on a Sunday, Koningsdag takes place one day earlier. This will therefore be the case in 2025.
Traditionally, the monarch also conducts a ceremonial visit to one or more municipalities in the country on this day. This and all other celebrations took place in Eindhoven in 2021 on a limited basis because of the Corona crisis.
On Thursday 27 April 2023, His Majesty King Willem-Alexander, Her Majesty Queen Maxima and members of the Royal Family will celebrate King's Day in Rotterdam and South Holland.
More information about the programme can be found at https://www.koningsdaginrotterdam.nl/.
Dutch people dress in orange (the colour of the Royal House of Orange-Nassau) and celebrate all over the country with parades, folk festivals and concerts.
Characteristic are the flea markets (Vrijmarkt), where anyone can sell on the street without a permit. On the streets, squares and parks clearly marked as Vrijmarkt, many people offer their old things for small amounts of money. There is also music or other entertainment. Games like egg throwing are also organised, mostly by students who want to fill their wallets. In Utrecht, the flea market itself starts the evening before at 6 pm (koningsnacht). Places on the Vrijmarkt are coveted and are "reserved" the day before by signs and barrier tapes ("Bezet").
The income from this day is tax-free. Koningsdag is one of the largest festive events in the Netherlands. In some cities, Koningsnacht is also celebrated the night before.
The evening and night before King's Day, which is celebrated on 27 April, are of special significance in the Netherlands. The so-called "King's Night" or "Koningsnacht" is the prelude to the King's Day celebrations, a bank holiday in honour of King Willem-Alexander's birthday.
In many cities and towns, public events, live music, street festivals and parties already take place on the eve of King's Day. The atmosphere is exuberant and joyful, and people celebrate together until the early hours of the morning. The colour orange, symbolic of the Royal House of Orange-Nassau, dominates the scene - many Dutch people wear orange clothes, accessories or wigs to express their attachment to the Royal House.
Especially in larger cities like Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht or The Hague, the King's Night is a special highlight. The events are varied and range from small, family celebrations to large, boisterous parties, often held outdoors. Food trucks and stalls offer typical Dutch specialities such as poffertjes, frikandels and herring, so that physical well-being is also catered for.
The King's Night is not only a special experience for the locals, but also attracts many tourists who want to immerse themselves in the lively atmosphere and experience Dutch culture at first hand. The celebrations continue the next day, the actual King's Day, with many activities such as flea markets, parades and other events throughout the country.
King's Night in Amsterdam: https://www.iamsterdam.com/uit/koningsdag/feestjes-koningsnacht
King's Night in The Hague: https://www.thelifeilive.nl/
King's Night in Utrecht: https://www.koningsdaginutrecht.nl/koningsnacht/
Official public holiday
In the Netherlands, koningsdag is a public holiday.
Public holiday and still working? There is no law in the Netherlands that states that employees are free from work on certain public holidays. There is therefore no legal right to a day off on a public holiday. The collective agreement (Collectieve arbeidsovereenkomst CAO) or employment contract states whether employees are "off" on public holidays or have to work after all.
Schools, training institutes and public facilities are closed.
Shops are closed.
Restaurants are allowed to open and often offer special deals in response to King's Day.
Please check the opening hours on the website of the respective restaurant.
Supermarkets are open - especially in the big cities.
King's Day in the Netherlands:
|Koningsdag 2024||King's Day 2024||Saturday, 27th April 2024|
|Koningsdag 2025||King's Day 2025||Saturday, 26th April 2025|
|Koningsdag 2026||King's Day 2026||Monday, 27th April 2026|
|Koningsdag 2027||King's Day 2027||Tuesday, 27th April 2027|
|Koningsdag 2028||King's Day 2028||Thursday, 27th April 2028|
|Koningsdag 2029||King's Day 2029||Friday, 27th April 2029|
|Koningsdag 2030||King's Day 2030||Saturday, 27th April 2030|
|Koningsdag 2031||King's Day 2031||Saturday, 26th April 2031|