May and June are the holiday-richest months in Germany. There are a few things to keep in mind, such as that offices, universities, schools and shops are closed.
Find out which days these are and why they are so special in the following article.
On Ascension Day, this year on Thursday 26 May, Christians celebrate the return of Jesus Christ as the Son of God to his Father in heaven. The feast is celebrated 39 days after Easter Sunday.
Ascension Day is a public holiday throughout Germany, so make sure you do your shopping or make important phone calls beforehand! Some people use Friday, 27 May, as a bridge day for a long weekend, but supermarkets and the like are open as usual on Friday and Saturaday afterwards.
Father’s Day is also celebrated in Germany on Ascension Day. Everywhere, fathers set off with handcarts and drink beer together. The Father’s Day custom originated in the USA at the beginning of the 20th century and soon became established in Germany. But walking has its origins in the Bible: since the 4th century, believers have walked around the fields on this day and asked for a good harvest. The fact that beer is drunk on this day today is thanks to the breweries, which pursued economic interests and used this day for themselves. Men who are not fathers also go out with friends and celebrate together.
Another Christian holiday is Whit Monday, which this year falls on 6 June. This is also a bank holiday and the same applies as on Ascension Day, shops are closed! Attention on Whit Sunday, 05 June, this is not a public holiday in NRW, but shops that are open on Sundays may change their opening hours!
Did you know?
Christian Pentecost originated from the Jewish festival of Shavuot, which celebrates the revelation of the Torah.
The last big, important holiday in June is Corpus Christi. Corpus Christi falls this year on Thursday 16 June and is a public holiday in six German states, including NRW, so the same rules apply here as on the days mentioned above! Supermarkets and other shops are closed, schools and universities are closed, as are offices and other private and municipal institutions.
On this day we celebrate the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ, which has been celebrated since 1247. There are large church services and processions through the city.
Make a note of the dates and don’t forget to do urgent things beforehand!
(Photo by Waldemar Brandt on Unsplash)