King’s Day is celebrated every year on 27 April in Amsterdam and everywhere else in The Netherlands. It’s a national holiday, celebrating the birthday of the King of the Netherlands, Willem Alexander. The night before 27 april, is a night of celebration as well, with many stages and people on the streets.
In 2014, Willem Alexander took the place of the reigning Queen of The Netherlands, Beatrix. Since then, The Netherlands has a King instead of a Queen. Queensday was celebrated on the 30th of April, Willem Alexander changed the date to 27 of April. So that makes 27 April the new King’s Day of The Netherlands.
Where is King’s Day in Amsterdam?
King’s is celebrated in everywhere in The Netherlands (Holland). Even small villages have their own ‘orange commission’ who organise special events, such a parade and typical Dutch games. The biggest Queens day party by far, is in the capital of Amsterdam. Here, over a million people, from all over the country, gather to celebrate. Expect over 1 million people huddled in the small streets of the inner city, dressed in orange, drinking and dancing. Hotels are booked way in advance, you can compare hotel prices online to see if there’s still anything available.
What is King’s Day in Amsterdam like?
King’s Day in Amsterdam, normal life has disappeared. Shops are closed, everybody is out on the streets from early morning till midnight, when the party ends.
Free open air market
In Amsterdam and in all other cities and villages in Holland, Queens Day is most known for its free open air market or flea market. People take out their old rubbish and try to sell them on the streets in a car boot sale kinda manner.
Vondelpark for kids
Also, children and grown-ups organize games, they play music and stage performances to earn a small change. At Vondelpark, the kids have taken over. Selling their art, making music, playing games.
Hundreds of boats in the Amsterdam canals
Many people take out or rent a small boat and celebrate King’s Day on the canals of Amsterdam.
Of course, orange is the main colour on this day: clothes are orange, faces are painted orange, food is orange, drinks are orange. We call this the orange craze.
Street parties everywhere
Bars, clubs, or just people who feel like it (and have a permit) are allowed to organise their own event in the streets. That means there are many stages in the streets, mainly in the center of the city, where dj’s and live bands play. On the main squares, stages are built for bands and dj’s to perform. King’s Day is not just celebrated in Amsterdam, but everywhere in The Netherlands, so if you don’t like big crowd, try a local party in a smaller town!