In the Netherlands, there are more than two weeks worth of national holidays each year. But some of those holidays are more important than others, and banks and public offices certainly won’t be closed on all of them.
Still, if you’re visiting the Netherlands, it’s important to be aware of local holidays, both to ensure you’re following and respecting local customs and to be sure you won’t get caught needing a bank on a day that they’re all closed.
While some countries will observe holidays that fall on weekends on another day, like the following Monday, this isn't customary in the Netherlands — if a public holiday falls on a weekend, no extra time off is usually given.
There are several Dutch holidays that fall on different dates each year, so it’s important to be aware of major holidays and when they’re going to be celebrated. Read on for a guide to everything you need to know about bank and public holidays in the Netherlands.
There are 13 national holidays in the Netherlands each year.
- Dutch public holidays: 9
- Dutch bank holidays: 11
Mother’s Day and Father’s Day aren't public holidays in the Netherlands, but they're still widely celebrated.
Mother’s Day is held on the second Sunday in May each year. Typically, children celebrate their mothers by preparing breakfast in bed for them. Later in the day, children and fathers will often give mom a break by taking over some of the household chores typically done by mothers. Older children generally buy flowers for their mothers. Since Mother’s Day is held on a Sunday, many Dutch families have time off. It’s customary for them to go somewhere Mom likes to go for a family day. Picnics and walks in public parks are common Mother’s Day activities.
Father’s Day is held on the third Sunday in June. As on Mother’s Day, it’s traditional for children to prepare breakfast in bed for dads on this day. It’s also common for families to gather together for a large dinner, usually at a grandparent’s house. In recent years, it has become more common for families to eat out on Father’s Day, making it one of the busiest days of the year for Dutch restaurants. Young children make crafts in school to give to their fathers as gifts, and older children will sometimes buy gifts for their fathers such as socks, ties or electronics.
In the Netherlands, public celebrations of major holidays often include festivals. There are many important traditions surrounding almost all Dutch holidays — the Dutch definitely take their holidays seriously.
In the Netherlands, Christmas is a major holiday that's celebrated over two days: Christmas day and “Second Christmas.” It’s not customary to exchange gifts on Christmas; rather, the holiday is a time for families to be together. Gifts are given earlier in December, on Sinterklaas, another important Dutch holiday.
New Year’s Day is widely celebrated in the Netherlands with fireworks. It’s also customary to express good intentions for the coming year while celebrating with family and friends.
An important holiday in the Netherlands is King’s Day, celebrated in honor of the king’s birthday on April 27th. On that day, public markets are held in the streets, and the king and his family visit two cities, where programs are organized to tell about local folklore. The night before King’s Day is celebrated with musical performances in city centres.
Birthdays are considered serious celebrations in the Netherlands. Friends and family will often drop by to visit or send cards on birthdays, and the birthday person will often treat those around him or her to treats like pastries or candy.
|Holiday||Name of holiday in Dutch||2017 Date||Bank holiday?|
|New Year’s Day||Nieuwjaarsdag||1 January, 2017||Yes|
|Good Friday||Goede vrijdag||14 April, 2017||Yes|
|Easter||Eerste paasdag||16 April, 2017||Yes|
|Easter Monday||Easter Monday||17 April, 2017||Yes|
|King’s Day||Koningsdag||27 April, 2017||Yes|
|National Remembrance Day||Dodenherdenking||4 May, 2017||No|
|Liberation Day||Bevrijdingsdag||5 May, 2017||Yes|
|Ascension Day||Hemelvaartsdag||25 May, 2017||Yes|
|Whit Sunday or Pentecost Sunday||Eerste pinksterdag||4 June, 2017||Yes|
|Whit Monday or Pentecost Monday||Tweede pinksterdag||5 June, 2017||Yes|
|All Saints Day||Allerheiligen||1 November, 2017||No|
|Christmas Day||Eerste kerstdag||25 December, 2017||Yes|
|Second Christmas||Tweede kerstdag||26 December, 2017||Yes|
|Holiday||Name of holiday in Dutch||2018 Date||Bank holiday?|
|New Year’s Day||Nieuwjaarsdag||1 January, 2018||Yes|
|Good Friday||Goede vrijdag||30 March, 2018||Yes|
|Easter||Eerste paasdag||1 April, 2018||Yes|
|Easter Monday||Easter Monday||2 April, 2018||Yes|
|King’s Day||Koningsdag||27 April, 2018||Yes|
|National Remembrance Day||Dodenherdenking||4 May, 2018||No|
|Liberation Day||Bevrijdingsdag||5 May, 2018||Yes|
|Ascension Day||Hemelvaartsdag||10 May, 2018||Yes|
|Whit Sunday or Pentecost Sunday||Eerste pinksterdag||20 May, 2018||Yes|
|Whit Monday or Pentecost Monday||Tweede pinksterdag||21 May, 2018||Yes|
|All Saints Day||Allerheiligen||4 November, 2018||No|
|Christmas Day||Eerste kerstdag||25 December, 2018||Yes|
|Second Christmas||Tweede kerstdag||26 December, 2018||Yes|
|Holiday||Name of holiday in Dutch||2019 Date||Bank holiday?|
|New Year’s Day||Nieuwjaarsdag||1 January, 2019||Yes|
|Good Friday||Goede vrijdag||19 April, 2019||Yes|
|Easter||Eerste paasdag||21 April, 2019||Yes|
|Easter Monday||Easter Monday||22 April, 2019||Yes|
|King’s Day||Koningsdag||27 April, 2019||Yes|
|National Remembrance Day||Dodenherdenking||4 May, 2019||No|
|Liberation Day||Bevrijdingsdag||5 May, 2019||Yes|
|Ascension Day||Hemelvaartsdag||30 May, 2019||Yes|
|Whit Sunday or Pentecost Sunday||Eerste pinksterdag||9 June, 2019||Yes|
|Whit Monday or Pentecost Monday||Tweede pinksterdag||10 June, 2019||Yes|
|All Saints Day||Allerheiligen||3 November, 2019||No|
|Christmas Day||Eerste kerstdag||25 December, 2019||Yes|
|Second Christmas||Tweede kerstdag||26 December, 2019||Yes|
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Knowing when and how the Dutch celebrate their holidays means you’re ready to celebrate like a local and avoid getting caught needing a bank when they’re all closed. Happy holidays!