This is a LIST of holidays and observances by various categorization.
- Beginning in 2000, Spring Festival, and National Day are week-long holidays in the mainland territory of the People's Republic of China, known as Golden Weeks. International Labor Day was a similar holiday from 2000 until 2007.
- In Japan, golden-week lasts roughly a full week. Then, in 2007, the law was amended so that if any 2 public holidays occur both on a weekday and are separated by a day, then that intermediate day shall also be a public holiday, thus creating a 3-day long public holiday.
- In Colombia, in the holy week there are consecutive holidays Jueves Santo (Holy Thursday) and Viernes Santo (Holy Friday) with variable dates in March or April.
- In Poland during holidays on the 1st May and 3rd May, when taking a few days of leave can result in 9-day-long holidays; this is called The Picnic (or Majówka).
- In Ireland, St. Patrick's Day can occasionally occur in Holy Week, the week before Easter; in this case the three holidays (St. Patrick's Day, Good Friday, and Easter Monday) plus three days leave can result in a 10-day break. See Public holidays in the Republic of Ireland.
- In Australia, Africa, Canada, Ireland, Poland, Russia and the UK, a public holiday otherwise falling on a Sunday will result in observance of the public holiday on the next available weekday (generally Monday). This arrangement results in a long weekend
- The U.S. Congress changed the observance of Memorial Day and Washington's Birthday from fixed dates to certain Mondays in 1968 (effective 1971). Several states had passed similar laws earlier.
- In The Netherlands, Queen's day is celebrated on 30th April, Remembrance of the Dead on the 4th May and Liberation day every 5 years on the 5th May. When Queen's day falls on Friday and Liberation Day is celebrated, two days' break can result in a 10-day break.
Celtic, Norse, and Neopagan holidays
In the order of the Wheel of the Year:
- Samhain (Celtic): 31 October-1 November, Celtic New Year, first day of winter
- Winternights (Norse): 29 October-2 November, Norse New Year
- Yule (Norse): 21 December-22 December, winter solstice, Celtic mid-winter
- Imbolc (Celtic): 1 February-2 February, Celtic first day of spring
- Ostara/Easter (Norse): 21 March-22 march, vernal equinox, Celtic mid-spring
- Beltane (Celtic): 30 April-1 May, Celtic first day of summer
- Litha (Norse): 21 June-22 June, summer solstice, Celtic mid-summer
- Lughnasadh (Celtic): 1 August-2 August, Celtic first day of autumn
- Mabon/Harvest End (Norse): 21 September-22 September, autumnal equinox, Celtic mid-fall
The Catholic patronal feast day or 'name day' are celebrated in each place's patron saint's day, according to the Calendar of saints.
- Hanukkah (also: Chanukah; the Festival of Lights)
- Passover (Deliverance of Jews from slavery in Egypt)
- Purim (Deliverance of Jews in Persia from Haman)
- Rosh Hashanah (New Year)
- Shavuot (Festival of Weeks; Harvest Festival)
- Sukkot (The Feast of Tabernacles)
- Tisha B'Av (Day commemorating the destruction of the First and Second Temples)
- Tu B'shvat (New year of the trees)
- Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement)
- Simchat Torah (Completion of the Sefer Torah)
- Shemini Atzeret (The beginning of the rainy season in Israel, sometimes confused as being the 8th day of Sukkot)
- Yamim Hanora'im (Ten days of repentance from Rosh Hashanah to Yom Kippur)
- Shabbat (The day of rest, the seventh day of the week, and the holiest day of the week)
Western winter holidays in the Northern Hemisphere
- Thanksgiving - (fourth Thursday in November in United States) — Holiday generally observed as an expression of gratitude, traditionally to God, for the autumn harvest. It is traditionally celebrated with a meal shared among friends and family in which turkey is eaten. It is celebrated by many as a secular holiday, and in the USA marks the beginning of the "holiday season".
- Black Friday - (Day after Thanksgiving in United States) — Day after Thanksgiving. It is generally viewed as the first day of the Christmas shopping season. Stores generally give sales and discounts to attract customers.
- Winter Solstice, Yule - (Winter solstice, around 21-22 December in the northern hemisphere and 21-22 June in the southern hemisphere) — The celebrations on the winter solstice, the longest night and shortest day of the year, are traditionally marked with anything that symbolizes or encourages life. Decorations of evergreens, bright objects and lights; singing songs, giving gifts, feasting and romantic events are often included. For Neopagans this is the celebration of the death and rebirth of the sun and is one of the eight sabbats on the wheel of the year.
- Hanukkah - (26 Kislev - 2/3 Tevet - almost always in December) — Jewish holiday celebrating the defeat of Seleucid forces who had tried to prevent Israel from practicing Judaism, and also celebrating the miracle of the Menorah lights burning for eight days with only enough olive oil for one day.
- Christmas Eve - (24 December) — Day before Christmas. Observances usually include big feasts at night to celebrate the day to come. It is the supposed night that Santa Claus delivers presents to all the good children of the world.
- Christmas Day - (25 December) — Christian holiday commemorating the traditional birth-date of Jesus. Observances include gift-giving, the decoration of trees and houses, and Santa Claus folktales.
- Kwanzaa (USA) - (26 December - 1 January) — A modern American invention held from December 26 to January 1 honoring African-American heritage, primarily in the United States. It was invented in 1966 by black activist and marxist Ron Karenga.
- St Stephen's Day or Second Day of Christmas (26 December) — Holiday observed in many European countries.
- Boxing Day (26 December or 27 December) — Holiday observed in many Commonwealth countries on the first non-Sunday after Christmas.
- New Year's Eve - (31 December) — Night before New Year's Day. Usually observed with celebrations and festivities in anticipation of the new year.
- New Year's Day - (1 January) — Holiday observing the first day of the year in the Gregorian calendar.
- A secular name for these holidays is a winter holiday. iTunes classifies "Christmas Music" as "Holiday Music" which can cause confusion for the English speaking world outside of the US, for whom "Holidays" are the same as "Vacations" - Annual Holidays, Easter Holidays, School Holidays, Summer Holidays, Skiing Holidays, Public Holidays etc.
National holidays by country
Many other days are marked to celebrate events or people, around the world, but are not strictly holidays as time off work is rarely given.
Other secular holidays not observed internationally:
- Army Day (1 August in the mainland territory of the People's Republic of China)
- Boxing Day (26 December in the Commonwealth of Nations)
- Canada Day (1 July) in Canada, celebration of the date of the Confederation of Canada (Canada was not completely independent from Britain until the proclamation of the Constitution of Canada, 17 April, 1982.) Formerly known as Dominion Day, as this was the day on which Canada became a self-governing Dominion within the British Empire.
- Columbus Day (Celebrated by the U.S. on the second Monday in October.)
- Confederate Memorial Day Celebrated by the original Confederate States at various times during the year; still celebrated on the fourth Monday in April in Alabama
- Constitution Day (3 May) is one of the two most important national holidays in Poland (other being National Independence Day on 11 November). It commemorates proclamation of Constitution of May 3 (the first modern constitution in Europe) by the Sejm of Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth in 1791.
- Darwin Day
- Earth Day (22 April) Celebrated in many countries as a day to cherish nature.
- Flag Day (14 June in the United States, 2 May in Poland)
- Grandparents Day (Sunday after September Labor Day - proclaimed in the United States by Jimmy Carter in 1978)
- Groundhog Day (2 February in United States and Canada)
- Guy Fawkes Night Day (5 November) In memory of the failed Gunpowder Plot by Guy Fawkes Celebrated in Great Britain and Ireland and other countries of the commonwealth
- Independence day or National day (4 July in the United States and other dates in many nations; it is the most important holiday in various countries around the globe.)
- Juneteenth (19 June) Official holiday in 14 states that commemorates the abolition of slavery in Texas (unofficial in 5 other US states)
- Labor Day (first Monday in September in the United States (federal holiday), and Canada, where it is known as Labour Day)
- Labour Day (Many European and South American countries celebrate Labour Day on May 1)
- Lee-Jackson-King Day (20 January) Combined holiday celebrated in the Commonwealth of Virginia from 1984 to 2000
- Martin Luther King, Jr. Day (third Monday in January in the United States)
- Melbourne Cup Day (held on the first Tuesday of November - the day of the Melbourne Cup in the Melbourne metropolitan area)
- Patriot's Day (third Monday in April in Massachusetts and Maine, United States)
- Pioneer Day (24 July in Utah, United States)
- Presidents Day honoring the birthdays of George Washington and Abraham Lincoln (Third Monday in February in United States; US federal holiday)
- Queen's Day (30 April in the Netherlands)
- Saint Nicholas Day (05 December in the Netherlands, 06 December in Belgium)
- Victoria Day (Monday on or before May 24 in Canada, also in some parts of Scotland)
- Youth Day (4 May in the People's Republic of China, in commemoration Beijing students who protested against Western imperialism on this day)
These are holidays that are not traditionally marked on calendars. These holidays are celebrated by various groups and individuals. Some are designed to promote a cause, others recognize historical events not recognized officially, and others are "funny" holidays, generally intended as humorous distractions and excuses to share laughs among friends.
- April Fools' Day (1 April)
- Black Friday (The day after Thanksgiving, or any Friday the 13th)
- Bloomsday (16 June based on James Joyce's novel Ulysses)
- Bubble Gum Day - (February 1)
- Buy Nothing Day (The Day after Thanksgiving)
- Christmas Eve (24 December)
- Festivus (23 December)
- _First_Contact (5 April) (The day Vulcans establish first contact with humanity)
- Four Twenty (20 April)
- Friendship Day (first Sunday in August)
- GIS Day (The Wednesday during Geography Awareness Week in November)
- International Cannabis Day (20 April)
- International Dadaism Month (4 February, 1 April, 28 March, 15 July, 2 August, 7 August, 16 August, 26 August, 18 September, 22 September, 1 October, 17 October, 26 October)
- International Scurvy Awareness Day (2 May) Official Website: LimeStrong
- International Talk Like a Pirate Day (19 September)
- International Yak Day (April 29)
- Ninja Day (5 December)
- Marathon Monday (3rd Monday in April, a sidenote to Patriot's Day)
- Mischief Night (30 October)
- Mole Day (23 October)
- Monkey Day (14 December))
- National Ammo Day (19 November)
- National Cancer Survivors Day (first Sunday in June)
- National Gorilla Suit Day (31 January)
- National Hugging Day - (January 21)
- National Loot Day (13 February)
- No Pants Day (first Friday of May)
- Opposite Day (random date, most often 25 January)
- Pi Day (14 March) or Pi Approximation Day (22 July)
- Super Bowl Sunday (Day of the National Football League championship)
- S.A.D. -- (Single's Awareness Day) (14 February)
- Tax Freedom Day
- Towel Day (25 May) (a tribute to the late Douglas Adams)
- Dipship Day (22 Step)