Public Holidays in Turkey
Different types of national and international public holidays in Turkey are celebrated every year, see if this affects your trip to Turkey.
Since its establishment in 1923, Turkey has been celebrating some of the most important dates for its foundation as official public holidays. Although the Republic of Turkey does not have an official religion, the majority of the population believes in the religion of Islam.
Since many people celebrate Islamic religious events, some of such events are also considered public holidays. Some internationally celebrated days like “New Year’s Day” are also recognized as public holidays by the Turkish government. Traveling to Turkey during any of these holidays could be a culturally enriching experience for you.
What Happens on Public Holidays in Turkey?
Public holidays in Turkey have different themes. These holidays can be separated into two categories: national holidays and religious holidays.
It’s possible to see huge Turkish flags and pictures of Ataturk hanging outside the government buildings and some smaller flags outside of people’s balconies during national holidays. You can also see some parades on the streets around the country or witness some form of singing or dancing performances by children in school gardens.
During religious holidays, you probably won’t be able to see obvious elements that will tell you that it’s a public holiday, people just tend to visit their friends, neighbors, and relatives during such days. The common thing both categories share is that government buildings including schools are closed. Most private companies don’t operate on public holidays in Turkey as well.
This excludes the majority of the restaurants, all the hotels and ways of public transportations of course. Places like public museums are closed on national holidays, but they are open during religious holidays except for the first day of that specific religious holiday. The first days of January and May are also considered national public holidays. So, if you are planning to visit public buildings during your visit to Turkey, you should avoid doing so during public holidays.
Dates of Public Holidays in Turkey
National holidays in Turkey have a fixed calendar date, religious holidays don’t have that. Their dates change every year according to the Ramadan month. Here is the list of national public holidays.
● New Year’s Day: January 1st
● National Sovereignty and Children’s Day: April 23rd
● Labor Day: May 1st
● Commemoration of Ataturk, Youth and Sports Day: May 19th
● Democracy and National Unity Day: July 15th
● Victory Day: August 30th
● Republic Day of Turkey: October 29th