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Queen’s Day or Koninginnedag is a national holiday in the Netherlands. On this day, the people of the Netherlands celebrate the birthday of the Queen of the Netherlands. Queen's Day is also an occasion for the world-famous Orange Craze. Have you heard of it? Don’t worry; I’ll let you in on all the details soon.
Before we start partying, let’s learn about the history of the day…
The first Queen’s Day was celebrated on August 31st, 1885, in honor of the birth of Queen Wilhelmina. After her daughter Juliana succeeded to the throne in 1949, the day was changed to April 30th in accordance with the new Queen’s birthday. Queen Juliana had a daughter, Queen Beatrix, who succeeded her mother in 1980. You’d expect Queen’s Day would have been moved to Queen Beatrix’s birthday, right? Not this time – Queen Beatrix was born on January 31st, but Queen Beatrix officially celebrates her birthday on April 30th to favor people celebrating outdoor party with better weather. Isn't the Queen lovely?
It’s party time!
Crown-shaped Orange balloons, decorated on buildings, tell us it’s time to party.
Tada! Look at us! On this day most people wear orange clothing or at least creative orange accessories. The color orange is a ubiquitous sight, and refers to the name of the royal family, the House of Orange. Everywhere in the city you'll see orange banners, orange colored foods and drinks. So don't forget your orange t-shirt when you join the Orange Craze!
A few days before the event, I asked my Dutch friends where I should go on Queen’s Day. Everyone shouted “Amsterdam.” Yeah, that’s right! Amsterdam is the perfect place to party! We decided to get on a train out of Tillberg straight to Amsterdam.
As we arrived at the central station in Amsterdam, all I could see was the color orange. From giant sunglasses to orange T shirts to fresh orange juice… Everything was colored in orange! It was impressive!
On Queen’s Day, people filled the whole streets that the trams and buses don’t run. As I walked around the city, I saw a lot of people enjoying the sunlight and cold beer on the street. Ahh… it makes me happy to think about it now!
In the streets, canals, parks and everywhere in between, the city was bursting with orange as Amsterdam-mers enjoyed the biggest street party of the year. I saw many people partying on some of the thousands brightly decorated boats, which packed the narrow Amsterdam canals.
Since Amsterdam is a city that has a rich trading history, its people love to haggle and bargain. This tradition continues today in the form of one of the world’s largest flea markets where everyone has the chance to sell their second-hand things on the streets and parks of Amsterdam. The two kids who handed out their homemade sweets were adorable!
There are also plenty more activities taking place across the city for the young and young at heart, including face-painting, games and sports events. As you can see, the streets were really crowded. It was a really great getaway trip for me. I feel lucky to be in the Netherlands this season!
On Samsung Mobile NL Facebook page, there was a posting on Queen’s Day. Comments ranged from total party enjoyment to being stuck at work.
There are so many more parties I want to update you about – but that will have to wait for now. Thanks for reading!