Public Holidays in Latvia
Latvia, a Baltic gem nestled in Northern Europe, boasts a rich cultural heritage and a vibrant tradition of celebrating public holidays. From ancient pagan rituals to modern-day festivities, Latvia's public holidays provide a window into the country's soul.
Independence Day (Latvijas Republikas Neatkarības diena)
On November 18th, Latvia commemorates its declaration of independence from foreign rule in 1918. Festivities include parades, concerts, and the lighting of traditional bonfires, symbolizing the nation's spirit.
Līgo and Jāņi
Līgo and Jāņi, celebrated on June 23rd and 24th, respectively, are Latvia's most cherished summer solstice festivals. People gather in the countryside to sing folk songs, dance, and engage in rituals like wreath-making. These celebrations embrace nature, renewal, and unity.
Latvians eagerly anticipate Christmas, a time of family gatherings, candlelit church services, and a rich culinary tradition. Christmas Eve is particularly special, marked by a festive meal and the exchange of gifts.
New Year's Day (Jaungada diena)
The arrival of the new year is celebrated with fireworks, concerts, and gatherings. Many Latvians participate in the "First Foot" tradition, where the first person to enter a home in the new year brings good luck.
Easter in Latvia is a time of rebirth and reflection. Families paint eggs, attend church services, and engage in the unique tradition of egg rolling, where eggs are rolled downhill to predict the future.
Midsummer's Eve (Līgo vakars)
Similar to Līgo and Jāņi, Midsummer's Eve (celebrated on June 23rd) is marked by bonfires, folk songs, and dancing. It's a time when Latvians seek to connect with nature's rhythms.
Restoration of Independence Day (Latvijas Republikas Republikas atjaunošanas diena)
On May 4th, Latvia commemorates the restoration of its independence from the Soviet Union in 1990. The holiday is marked by cultural events, including concerts and exhibitions.8. National Flag Day (Latvijas karoga diena)
Flag Day, celebrated on June 4th, honors Latvia's national flag and its significance. Festivities often include raising the flag, parades, and educational activities.
Latvia's public holidays are not merely dates on the calendar; they are expressions of the nation's identity, history, and connection to nature. Whether it's the vibrant Midsummer's Eve celebrations or the quiet reflection of Christmas, each holiday carries its own unique charm and cultural significance. These festive traditions serve as a testament to Latvia's enduring spirit and its people's love for preserving their heritage.
Upcoming Holidays (next six months)
|Christmas Eve||December 24||Sunday||Public Holiday|
|Christmas Day||December 25||Monday||Public Holiday|
|Christmas Day (Day 2)||December 26||Tuesday||Public Holiday|
|New Year's Eve||December 31||Sunday||Public Holiday|
|New Year's Day||January 01||Monday||Public Holiday|
|Good Friday||March 29||Friday||Public Holiday|
|Easter Monday||April 01||Monday||Public Holiday|
|Labour Day||May 01||Wednesday||Public Holiday|
|Constituent Assembly Convocation Day||May 01||Wednesday||Public Holiday|
|Restoration of Independence Day||May 04||Saturday||Public Holiday|
|Restoration of Independence Day (observed)||May 06||Monday||Public Holiday|
|Whitsunday||May 19||Sunday||Public Holiday|