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Local Holidays and Local Observances

Local holidays are public holidays in a specific region or state. Local observances are observances in a specific region or state.

Knabenschiessen is an annual shooting competition and a local holiday in Zurich, Switzerland.


What Is a Local Holiday?

Local holidays are public holidays in a specific region or state. Local holidays have many different names, but they all refer to the same type of holiday—a holiday only celebrated locally, where people often get a day off from work and where businesses may close. Examples of the different types listed on timeanddate.com are:

  • Autonomous Community Holiday
  • Common Local Holiday
  • District Holiday
  • Local Holiday
  • Municipal Holiday
  • State Holiday
  • State Legal Holiday
  • Provincial Holiday
  • Regional Holiday

What Is a Local Observance?

Local observances are local celebrations or commemorations, without being public holidays. Some private businesses and places of employment may be closed. Local transport may also run at reduced capacity to accommodate festivities and activities held in honor of the day.

Like the local holiday, a local observance may be listed under different names, like state observation, state observance, or local observation. All types refer to the same meaning: A local celebration or commemoration without automatically taking a day off from work or businesses closing.

At timeanddate.com, we show a day as a local holiday or a local observance when a major political entity in a country, such as a state or a province, celebrates or observes it. When only a small part of the region observes it, we add an asterisk (*) next to the region. For example, Canterbury Anniversary Day is a public holiday in parts of Canterbury, New Zealand.

Cultural and Historical Significance

Like most holidays, local holidays and observances commemorate important historical, social, religious, and cultural events of the region. For instance, Burns Night is an annual local observance in Scotland in the United Kingdom. The day is not a public holiday, but it commemorates the life and times of Robert Burns, the famous Scottish poet.