Public holidays in Germany

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Except for the national holiday (German Unity Day), public holidays in Germany (gesetzliche Feiertage) are determined by the federal states.

New Year's Day Neujahrstag 1 January
Epiphany Heilige Drei Könige 6 January
Good Friday Karfreitag Easter Sunday - 2d
Easter Monday Ostermontag Easter Sunday + 1d
Labor Day Tag der Arbeit 1 May
Ascension Day Christi Himmelfahrt Easter Sunday + 39d
Whit Monday Pfingstmontag Easter Sunday + 50d
Corpus Christi Fronleichnam Easter Sunday + 60d 1 2
Peace Festival Friedensfest 8 August 3
Assumption Day Mariä Himmelfahrt 15 August 5,7
German Unity Day 6 Tag der Deutschen Einheit 3 October
Reformation Day Reformationstag 31 October
All Saints Allerheiligen 1 November
Day of Repentance and Prayer 4 Buß- und Bettag Wed. before 23 November 7
Christmas Day Weihnachtstag 25 December
St Stephen's Day / Boxing Day Zweiter Weihnachtsfeiertag 26 December
Total 8 12 13 9 10 9 9 10 10 9 11 11 12 11 11 9 10

Notes on the table

Public holiday within this state.
1 Only in a few Sorbian communities.
2 Only in the Catholic district of Eichsfeld.
3 Only in the city of Augsburg.
4 Public holiday in all states until 1994. The holiday was dropped in exchange for the introduction of nursing care insurance. Saxony is the only state where employers do not have to pay for nursing care insurance, as it was all paid by the employees, so they could keep the holiday.
5 Only in the approx. 1700 communities with mostly Catholic inhabitants and in the cities of Augsburg and Munich.
6 National holiday since 1990, commemorating German reunification on that date. Formerly 17 June in West Germany, commemorating the Workers' Uprising of 1953 in East Germany, also known as the "Day of German Unity". East Germany's national day was 7 October, the founding of the state in 1949.
7 On these days, schools are closed all over the state.
8 For states where not all holidays are observed consistently, the most widespread combination is given. Bavaria: including Assumption Day, excluding Peace Festival; Saxony and Thuringia: excluding Corpus Christi.

Good Friday and Holy Saturday are socalled "quiet days". Quiet days are days, where certain restrictions apply, as defined by local state authority. An example of this is the ban on dancing on Good Friday, which is observed in almost all German states.

Custom about holidays[edit]

Either Carnival Monday ("Rose Monday") or Mardi Gras is a de facto holiday in some towns and cities in Catholic western and southern Germany which have a strong Carnival tradition.

Ascension Day (Christi Himmelfahrt) and Corpus Christi (Fronleichnam) are both on a Thursday each year. Taking only one day leave, employees can get a ‘four-day weekend’.

The Three Kings Day, better known as Epiphany, is 6 January, the day after the 12 days of Christmas. In parts of Germany, it has its own local customs.

See Also[edit]