Czech Holidays

Bank holidays and festivals . . .

Czechs celebrate some of the holidays, like New Year's Eve or Easter, the same as in other countries. Other holidays are unique for the Czech country and very closely related to its history.

  • New Year - January 1
  • Easter - April 4,5
  • Labour Day - May 1
  • Liberation from Fascism Day - May 8 – An attempt to liberate Prague from the German occupation during the World War II ended up in the Prague uprising in 1945.
  • Day of Slavic Missionaries St Cyril and St Methodius - July 5 – Cyril and Methodius came from the Balkans to the lands of Great Moravia in 863. Their goal was the evangelise the country and to reduce illiteracy.
  • Commemoration of the John Huss Martyrdom - July 6 – Burning at the stake of the religious reformer in 1415.
  • St Wenceslas Day - September 28 – He is proclaimed as a patron of the Czechs. His death is commemorated because he was murdered by his brother in 935.
  • Establishment of Czechoslovak Republic - October 28 – The Czechoslovak Republic was established in 1918.
  • Freedom and Democracy Day - November 17 – A commemoration of student demostrations. There have been two different events that happened on the same date, November 17. The first one in 1939, students were executed for their fight against the Nazi occupation. The second one was in 1989, the so called Velvet Revolution took place in Prague in which the people demanded the end of communism.
  • Christmas - December 24, 25, 26

Burning of Witches
April 30 is the final farewell to winter. People gather around fires and celebrate the arrival of spring. It was celebrated under the full moon and people believed that on that night the witches would come together. In order to protect themselves, people would light fires and they would also set fire to brooms and throw them up into the sky. They also believed that if they jumped over the fire, they would be young and fertile.

Czech Name Days
Czech people like to celebrate their names. They call the day when their name appears in the calendar their “Name Day” (svátek). On this day, they receive small presents or flowers from their friends and family. They wish one another a happy Name Day and all the good things you wish to your loved ones when they celebrate their birthday.