Important holidays in Sweden

By Beyondo, 6. Apr 2023

Official Swedish holidays - all you need to know! 

As in other countries, Sweden has many holidays throughout the year. In addition to the holidays that are common in every country, Sweden also has a number of holidays that are celebrated in a unique way. For example, the children dressed as witches walk around the neighbourhood at Easter and the Swedes watch a Christmas compilation of Donald Duck together at Christmas. Are you curious about how the other holidays are celebrated? You can read it in this blog article.

New Year's Day

On New Year's Eve, Swedes often go to a restaurant with a group of friends or family and then end the evening with a dance in a discotheque. As in many other countries around the world, Sweden celebrates New Year's Eve with lots of champagne and fireworks. After New Year's Eve, most Swedes enjoy a holiday. On January 13, exactly 20 days after Christmas, it is time to remove the Christmas tree from your home. The order of the day takes over.

Date: 31 December and 1 January


13 days after Christmas, a Christian holiday is celebrated in Sweden, namely Trettondagen. Trettondagen is also called Epiphany. On this day, christians celebrate the visit of the three wise men of the child Jesus, in the town of Bethlehem. All residents of Sweden have an official day off on this day.

Date: January 6

Easter Sunday

Sweden, like many other countries, also celebrates Easter, but not everyone celebrates Easter. About seven in ten Swedes celebrate Easter. In addition to eating a lot of tasty food on Easter, there is another tradition in Sweden. At Easter, there are a lot of little witches walking through the city. In the past, the witch was an important symbol in the superstition of the Swedes. The witch flew around on her broomstick at Easter and then met the devil. In addition, Easter fires were also lit, as protection against evil forces. Today, Easter fires can still be seen in Sweden, but the witch has been replaced by the Easter Bunny.

Date: Easter falls on a Sunday between 22 March and 25 April, but working out which Sunday exactly requires an astronomical calculation. So, it differs from year to year.

1st of May 

Since 1907, schoolchildren in Sweden have been selling May flowers on May 1, to raise money for children who are less fortunate. In addition, 1 May is also Labour Day. Nowadays, trips are often made on May 1. This has everything to do with the first rays of sunshine. Spring is coming.

Date: May 1

Kristi Himmelsfärdsdag - Ascension Day

On Thursday, the fortieth day after Easter, christians celebrate the ascension of Jesus Christ, which is why it is also called Ascension Day. In the past, this day was also seen as the first swimming or fishing day. People believed that when the fish bit well at a certain time, the fish bit well at exactly the same time for the rest of the summer. Today, Ascension Day is a public holiday.

Date: Ascension Day is the 40th day of Easter. It occurs 39 days after Easter Sunday. Which means, it also differs from year to year.


Exactly 50 days after Easter, the Swedes celebrate Pentecost. Pentecost is a christian holiday, where christians celebrate receiving the Holy Spirit. People often go to church at Pentecost, including in Sweden. Not only believers go to church, but also people who normally never go can be found in the church at Pentecost. Nowadays, many Swedes get married on this day.

Date: The holiday is celebrated on the seventh Sunday after Easter, hence the name. Since its date depends on the date of Easter, Pentecost is a moveable feast, that is, the date is not fixed.

National day

Since 2004, June 6 has been a national holiday in Sweden. This day is called National Day, or Swedish Flag Day. On this day, residents of Sweden celebrate their identity of Sweden. Every year a ceremony takes place with the King and Queen of Sweden. This is celebrated at Skansen, an open-air museum where the Swedish flag is hoisted and children offer the royal couple a bouquet of flowers.

Date: 6 June


The most famous holiday in Sweden: Midsommar. Traditionally, this is the day when the sun is in the sky the longest, and the night is the shortest. This day is often celebrated on a Friday closest to June 21. There are midsummer poles everywhere in Sweden. These are the largest of crosses decorated with wreaths, beautiful flowers and green leaves. When the midsummer pole is decorated from head to toe, people dance happily in a circle around the pole to the accompaniment of accordion or guitar music. Not only the poles are beautifully decorated with flowers, but also girls wear flower crowns in their hair. In addition to the decorated flower poles, you will also see many strawberries, as the Swedes love them, and lots of spirits and people dressed up in traditional costumes. A special experience to experience.

Date: In June, the summer solstice marks the official start of the astronomical summer and is the longest day of the year. Midsummer is there on different dates each year, however always in June.

All Saints' Day

All Saints' Day: on this day, people in Sweden reflect on the deceased. On this day you see many people lighting a candle in the cemetery.

Date: 2 November

Julafton - Christmas Eve 

Probably the most important day of Christmas for almost all Swedes. This day is celebrated on the 24th of December.

During Christmas (Jul) everything revolves around the famous Swedish smörgåsbord, also called Julbord. On this evening there are 101 dishes on the table, which are eaten in a certain order. So, you start with a pickled herring, then you continue to the cold dishes, hot dishes, meat stews, cheeses and of course the desserts should not be missing. To complete the Christmas party, you watch a Christmas compilation by Donald Duck while.

Date: 24 December

Christmas Day

Juldagen, in other words: Christmas Day. Christmas is celebrated extensively throughout the country. Families and friends gather to celebrate Christmas. In Sweden, Christmas starts early. Here they start with Advent, four Sundays before Christmas. Every Sunday before Christmas, candles are lit. Many Swedes also send Christmas cards around this time with the text 'God Jul & Gott Nytt År'. With this text, it is said: a good Christmas and a good New Year.

Date: 25 and 26 December

Now that you know which holidays are celebrated in Sweden, you can celebrate all the parties cheerfully like the rest of the country.

How do you celebrate these holidays in your country? We love hearing how it is being celebrated in the rest of the world. We would love to hear your story, please share it with us! Contact@beyondo.se