Holidays in Iceland 2024 (public and unofficial), flag days

In this publication All-Holidays.Info covers the following topic: holidays in Iceland 2024. We will provide the exact dates of public and unofficial holidays. We will also give a short description of authentic Icelandic holidays.

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Features of Icelandic holidays

There are three types of significant dates in Iceland:

  1. Public holidays.
  2. Flag days.
  3. Unofficial holidays.

On public holidays, most residents of the kingdom have the right to leave. In most cases, this is a completely non-working day. But there are two exceptions – Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve. According to Law 88 of December 24, 1971 and Law No. 94/1982, these days are public holidays from 13:00 to midnight.

Flag days are not public holidays. On these days, the national flag of Iceland is raised at government buildings. You will find a list of such dates later in the article. Officially, the rules for raising the national flag are regulated by Law No. 5 of January 23, 1991.

Holidays in Iceland 2024

Below are the 2024 holidays in Iceland. For convenience, we have arranged them in chronological order by month. For each holiday you will find clarification whether it is a state holiday or an unofficial one. You will find a list of flag days in Iceland in 2024 below in the article.

IMPORTANT! This publication lists the holidays in Iceland 2024 according to their original names. You can find a free translation in other sources, but we want to give you the most reliable information.

January 2024

  • January 1, 2024, Monday – New Year’s Day (public holiday).
  • January 6, 2024, Saturday – Epiphany (unofficial holiday).
  • January 19, 2024, Friday – Husband’s Day (unofficial holiday).

February 2024

  • February 12, 2024, Monday – Bun Day (unofficial holiday).
  • February 13, 2024, Tuesday – Explosion Day / Carnival / Maslenitsa (unofficial holiday).
  • Wednesday 14 February 2024 – Ash Wednesday (unofficial holiday), Valentine’s Day (unofficial holiday).
  • February 18, 2024, Sunday – Women’s Day (unofficial holiday).

Bun Day is an annual food festival in Iceland. On this holiday, Icelandic bakeries are filled with special buns called bollur. They are sweetened with sugar and jam, often with cream or chocolate.

March 2024

  • March 24, 2024, Sunday – Palm Sunday (unofficial holiday).
  • Thursday 28 March 2024 – Maundy Thursday (public holiday).
  • Friday 29 March 2024 – Good Friday (public holiday).
  • Sunday 31 March 2024 – Easter Sunday (public holiday).

April 2024

  • Monday 1 April 2024 – Easter Monday (public holiday).
  • April 25, 2024, Thursday – First day of summer (public holiday).

The first day of summer marks the beginning of the summer season in Iceland. This is an annual holiday that marks the end of the dark days of winter. On the First Day of Summer, Icelanders celebrate the longer, brighter days ahead with family gatherings, festivals and cultural events.

May 2024

  • Wednesday, May 1, 2024 – Labor Day (public holiday).
  • Thursday, May 9, 2024 – Ascension of Christ (public holiday).
  • Sunday, May 12, 2024 – Mother’s Day (unofficial holiday).
  • May 19, 2024, Sunday – Trinity (public holiday).
  • Monday 20 May 2024 – Trinity Monday (public holiday).
  • Thursday 30 May 2024 – Corpus Christi (public holiday).

June 2024

  • June 2, 2024, Sunday – Sailor’s Day (unofficial holiday).
  • Monday 17 June 2024 – National Day of Iceland (public holiday).

August 2024

  • Monday 5 August 2024 – Traders’ Weekend (public holiday).
  • August 15, 2024, Thursday – Assumption Day (unofficial holiday).

Traders’ Weekend is the main holiday weekend in Iceland. It was originally created to honor shopkeepers and merchants. But over time it turned into a nationwide festival celebrating the height of summer. The festive atmosphere reaches its peak on Saturday, when Waka Dagur, or “Day of Awakening”, is celebrated in memory of the vendors of the past who guarded their shops at night to serve farm customers on weekends.

October 2024

  • October 26, 2024, Saturday – First day of winter (unofficial holiday).
  • October 31, 2024, Thursday – Halloween (unofficial holiday).

As November ends, the days in Iceland become significantly shorter as Icelanders prepare for the official arrival of winter. The First Day of Winter holiday marks the “official” arrival of the winter season, although winter weather usually arrives much earlier. Traditionally, on Firsti vetrordagur, Icelanders enjoy winter dishes such as smoked lamb, fermented shark and soups.

November 2024

  • November 10, 2024, Sunday – Father’s Day (unofficial holiday).
  • Saturday 16 November 2024 – Icelandic Language Day (unofficial holiday).

December 2024

  • December 1, 2024, Sunday – Home Rule Day / Independence Day 1918 (unofficial holiday).
  • December 23, 2024, Monday – Mass of St. Thorlakur / Bishop of Thorlakur’s Day (unofficial holiday).
  • Tuesday 24 December 2024 – Christmas Eve (public holiday from 13:00).
  • Wednesday 25 December 2024 – Christmas Day (public holiday).
  • Thursday 26 December 2024 – Second Day of Christmas (public holiday).
  • Tuesday 31 December 2024 – New Year’s Eve (public holiday from 13:00).

Home Rule Day is an important national holiday in Iceland that celebrates the country’s sovereignty. On December 1, 1918, after many years of struggle, Iceland became an independent and sovereign state under the Danish crown. It was on this day that the Danish-Icelandic Act was signed, which granted Iceland the status of a sovereign state in free association with Denmark, allowing Iceland to manage its own internal affairs.

Who was Saint Torlakur?

St. Thorlakur Thorhallsson (1133–1193) was the Icelandic Roman Catholic bishop of Skalholt from 1178 until his death in 1193. In 1984 he was canonized by Pope John Paul II as the patron saint of Iceland.

He promoted celibacy among priests and was known for his ascetic habits – he often fasted and wore a hair shirt, which irritated his skin. This strict personal piety strengthened his reputation as a holy man. Stories of miracles both during his lifetime and posthumously played an important role in popular recognition of him as a saint. For example, they said that he healed a sick peasant.

Flag Days 2024 in Iceland

  1. Birthday of the President of Iceland (June 26).
  2. New Year’s Day.
  3. Good Friday.
  4. Easter Sunday.
  5. The first day of summer.
  6. May 1.
  7. Trinity.
  8. Sailor’s Day.
  9. June 17.
  10. December 1.
  11. Christmas.
  12. November 16th, Jonas Hallgrimsson’s birthday.

In this publication All-Holidays.Info told about the holidays in Iceland 2024. We also provided descriptions of authentic holidays. We hope this information was useful to you. Don’t forget to share this post with your friends!