Queen’s Day in Amsterdam

By 1800FlyEurope in Destination Highlights | on March 31st, 2010

Spring is a fantastic time to take a trip to Amsterdam, where you can see the lovely countryside and the famous tulips of Holland.  However, beautiful flowers and gorgeous scenery are not the only reasons to visit! If you travel to Amsterdam at the end of April, you can also participate in one of the Netherlands’ most fun and famous events: Queen’s Day.  It is held each year on April 30 in Amsterdam.   The event was originally intended to commemorate a day of national unity in the Netherlands.  From 1891 until 1948, it was celebrated on the late Queen Wilhelmina’s birthday, August 31.  Nowadays,  the festival is celebrated on April 30, the birthday of the late Queen Juliana.

Festivities actually begin the night before (Queen’s Night) around 7:00 p.m. The bars and clubs are open until the wee hours of the morning.

Queen’s Day is also known as the Orange Festival because the Dutch royal family are also known as the House of Orange.  Everywhere you look, you will see the color orange all around.  The revelers are usually decked out head to toe in tangerine colored costumes and apparel.  Orange flavored drinks are served, orange banners and flags are flown and some of the fountains even have pigment added to the water!

For the bargain shoppers, a flea market (or free market) is also held during the festival.  At the free market,  you can trade something you no longer need for an item you’ve been eyeing from someone else.  The locals consider the market to be more fun than for profit, so you are bound to find some great deals.

Taking in the sights of the city, feasting on the traditional Dutch fare and partaking in the singing and dancing are what makes this festival unforgettable.  The event is huge, so make sure to wear your most comfortable shoes!

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Written by 1800FlyEurope

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