Germany is a country that takes pride in its rich history and cultural heritage. German holidays are a great way to experience this culture, as they celebrate important historical events, religious occasions, and traditions that are still significant today.
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Types of German holidays
There are a few different types of holidays in Germany that are worth mentioning:
German public holidays
In Germany, there are nine public holidays that are celebrated nationwide. These include New Year's Day, Easter Monday, Labor Day, Ascension Day, Whit Monday, Christmas Day, and Boxing Day. In addition, there are regional holidays, which are only celebrated in certain regions or states.
German religious holidays
Germany is predominantly a Christian country, so many of its holidays are based on religious observances. Some of the most significant religious holidays in Germany include Easter, Pentecost, and Christmas. During these holidays, many Germans attend church services and spend time with their families.
Easter in Germany
Easter (Ostern) is one of the most popular holidays celebrated in Germany, second only to the Christmas season. Easter in Germany is from April 7 - April 10, 2023. Good Friday (Karfreitag) and Easter Monday (Ostermontag) are public holidays — so you can expect to get paid leave on those two days as you enjoy a long weekend.
Germany has a rich cultural history, and its holidays reflect this. For example, Oktoberfest (Sep 16 – Oct 3) is a world-famous festival that celebrates German culture, music, and food. Other cultural holidays include Karneval (Feb 16 – Feb 22), which is celebrated in some regions of Germany, and St. Martin's Day (Nov 11), which is celebrated with parades and lantern processions.
Significance of Holidays
Each holiday in Germany has a unique significance that is rooted in the country's history, religion, or culture. For example, Oktoberfest originated in Munich in 1810 as a celebration of a royal wedding. Today, it is an internationally recognised festival that attracts millions of visitors every year.
List of holidays in Germany
Karneval • Feb 16 – Feb 22, 2023
Maifest (Mayfest) • May 1st, 202
Muttertag (Mother’s Day) • May 14, 2023
Vatertag (same as Ascension Day) • May 18, 2023
Oktoberfest • Sep 16 – Oct 3, 2023
Martinstag (St. Martin's Day) • Nov 11, 2023
How public holidays work in Germany
In Germany, public holidays mean most businesses are closed, just like Sundays. Employees get the day off and are still paid. The holidays celebrated depend on the state where you work, not where you live. Each German state has different public holidays; for example, Women's Day is a public holiday in Berlin, but not Epiphany or Corpus Christi. Bavaria has 13 public holidays, while Berlin only has 10. On Sundays in Berlin, some businesses are open.
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