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Upcoming Holidays and Festivals in the Netherlands

Festivities on Dam Square, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Historical costumes brighten Amsterdam's squares on big national holidays, such as King's Day in late April.
  • Before planning a trip around a festival, verify the festival dates on the festival's website or with a local tourist information office. For more information about these and other events, visit the official tourism site for the Netherlands.
  • This list includes major festivals in major cities, plus national holidays observed throughout the Netherlands. Many sights and banks close down on national holidays — keep it in mind when planning your itinerary. Note that this isn't a complete list; holidays can strike without warning.
  • See upcoming holidays and festivals across Europe


January 1:  New Year's Day (closures; icewater swims across the Netherlands, most notably in Scheveningen)

January 18:  National Tulip Day, Amsterdam (official start of tulip season; tulips fill Dam Square and are free for the picking in the afternoon)

Through January 19:  Amsterdam Light Festival

January 23–26:  Jumping Amsterdam (international equestrian competition)

February–March:  Carnival (Mardi Gras) celebrations in various towns, mostly in the south

March 21–May 10:  Keukenhof flower show, near Lisse (huge gardens in bloom)

April 4–5:  Rotterdam Marathon

April 12–13:  Easter Sunday and Monday (closures)

April 16–19:  KunstRAI Art Amsterdam (contemporary-art exhibition)

April 25:  Bloemencorso (25-mile flower parade from Noordwijk to Haarlem)

April 27:  King's Day (Koningsdag, King Willem-Alexander's birthday; party in the streets of Amsterdam and elsewhere)

May 4:  Remembrance of WWII Dead (Dodenherdenking; laying of wreaths and two-minute silence)

May 5:  Liberation Day (Bevrijdingsdag; closures; Liberation Festival in Amsterdam with live music)

May 21:  Ascension Day (closures)

May 29–June 23:  Holland Arts Festival, Amsterdam (concerts, theater, etc.)

May 31–June 1:  Pentecost and Whit Monday (closures)

June 17–21:  Festival Classique, Scheveningen

June 19–21:  Pinkpop, near Maastricht (rock festival)

Late June (3 days):  Parkpop music festival, The Hague

June 23–28:  Amsterdam Roots Festival (ethnic food, music, world culture)

July 3:  Grachtenloop run around canals, Haarlem

July 10–12:  North Sea Jazz Festival, Rotterdam

July 21–25:  Rotterdam Unlimited (street festival with live performances)

July 25–August 2:  Amsterdam Gay Pride

August 7–8 & 14–15 (likely):  International Fireworks Festival, Scheveningen

August 7–16 (likely):  Grachtenfestival (music and festivities on Prinsengracht barges, Amsterdam)

August 12–16:  SAIL Amsterdam (historic ships sail into the city, performances and concerts)

August 12–22 (likely):  Pluk de Nacht (outdoor film festival on the site of an old harbor in Amsterdam)

August 14–30:  De Parade Theatre Festival, Amsterdam (outdoor theater)

August 15:  Assumption Day (closures)

August 19–22:  Haarlem Jazz (free jazz festival on Grote Markt)

August 21–23 (likely):  Uitmarkt, Amsterdam (performances, book market, and kid-friendly activities)

August 27–28 (likely):  Jazz in the Canal (Jazz in de Gracht), The Hague

September (first week):  Flower parade on canals, from Aalsmeer to Amsterdam

September 4–7 (likely):  Jordaan Festival, Amsterdam (neighborhood street party)

September 5–6:  Open Monumentendag (normally closed historical sites open and free to the public)

September 27–28:  Yom Kippur (some closures of Jewish-history sights, including Anne Frank House and Jewish Historical Museum in Amsterdam)

October 14–18 (likely):  Amsterdam Dance Event (electronic music)

October 18:  Amsterdam Marathon

October 27–November 1 (likely):  Crossing Border Festival, The Hague (books, music, spoken word; much of it in English)

November 7 (likely):  Museum Night Amsterdam

November 15:  Sinterklaas Procession, Amsterdam (when Sinterklaas and Zwarte Piet arrive from Spain)

November 18–29:  International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam

November 26–January 17 (likely):  Amsterdam Light Festival

December 5:  St. Nicholas' Eve (Sinterklaasavond, when Dutch children get their presents from Sinterklaas)

December 25:  Christmas (Kerstmis; closures)

December 26:  "Second Day" of Christmas (Tweede Kerstdag; closures)

December 26–28 (likely):  International Chamber Music Festival, Utrecht