With the Fourth of July right around the corner, here in the U.S., we’re gearing up for the fireworks, barbecues and parades that come with Independence Day. In the spirit this festive occasion, we took a look at national holidays from around the world. Read on to find out how the following nations celebrate their patriotism.
Bastille Day, July 14
Formally called La Fête nationale and commonly referred to as Le quatorze juillet, Bastille Day commemorates the Storming of the Bastille and beginning of the French Revolution in 1789. Each year in Paris, the oldest and largest military parade in Europe is held to mark the occasion. Since 1918, this impressive display has made its way down the Champs-Élysées and includes 7,000 soldiers, 300 vehicles, 240 horses and over 80 planes and helicopters.
Constitution Day, May 17
Norway celebrates its independence from Sweden on the 17th of May every year. On this day in Oslo, the local children parade past the Royal Palace to exchange waves and greetings with the Royal Family. The children’s parade has been a central part of Constitution Day festivities since 1906.
German Unity Day, October 3
The national day of Germany, this holiday celebrates the reunification of Germany that took place in 1990, fulfilling the dream of a unified country that originated in the mid-19th century. Instead of taking place in the capital, official celebrations are hosted by a different city each year on a rotating schedule and include speeches, concerts, community meals and fireworks.
Sete de Setembro, September 7
After 322 years as a colony of Portugal, Brazil’s independence was declared in a now famous scene along the banks of the Ipiranga River on September 7, 1822. Known as “Sete de Setembro” or “Dia da Pátria”, September 7th is a nationally recognized holiday. Throughout the country, the day is marked by patriotic displays, but the primary event takes place in Brasília and includes a military parade along the Ministries Esplanade.
Republic Day, January 26
On January 26, 1950, the Constitution of India was officially adopted, establishing the country’s status as a republic completely independent from British rule. The main celebrations, which take place in New Delhi, are centered around the Delhi Republic Day parade. The festive procession follows the Rajpath from the presidential residence past the India gate, and honors the memory of the martyrs who died while fighting for Indian freedom.
Heard of any other festive world celebrations? Share your favorites in the comments.