Argentina has regular holidays, special holidays and religious holidays for followers of Catholicism, Judaism, Islam and the Eastern Orthodox faith. With the exception of the year 2012 where the bicentennial commemoration of the Argentine flag was held, the country has about 17 holidays throughout the year. The following are the main holidays in the Argentina Calendar:
Like most countries, the year starts off with the New Year on the 1st of January. This is an international holiday and it is known as Ano Nuevo in the local language.
The next holiday after New Year is the Carnival Day also known as Lunes de Carnaval in the Argentine language. This is a two-day holiday that starts on the 20th of February and ends on the 21st of February. The last day of the carnival is known as Martes de Carnaval.
The bicentenary Celebration holiday is not an annual holiday, but as the name suggests, it is a holiday to celebrate the 200 year anniversary of the Argentine flag. The Argentine flag was created in 1812 on the 27th of February. This anniversary is known as Dia Bicentenario de la Creacion y Primera Jura de la Bandera Argentina.
Day of Remembrance for Truth & Justice
On March 24, comes the Day of Remembrance for Truth & Justice. This is known as Dia de la Memoria por la Verdad y la Justicia.On this day, the country remembers the coup d’état that seized power and started the military dictatorships of the 1976 to 1983 period.
Day of the Fallen War Heroes
The next holiday is the Day of the Veterans & The Fallen in the Malvinas War. This takes place on the 2nd of April. On this holiday, also known as Dia del Veterano y de los Caidos en la Guerra de Malvinas, the country pays tribute to the veterans and dead war heroes who fought in the Falklands War in 1982.
Holy Thursday is a religious holiday which follows on the 5th of April. This is a Catholic holiday, also known as Jueves Santo.
On the following day, 6 April, there is Good Friday also known as Viernes Santo.
The first day of May is known as the Labour Day, also known as Dia del Trabajador in the local language. This is an international holiday to recognize and promote labor and production.
The next holiday after Labour Day is the Day of the First National Government, which takes place on the 25th of May. This day also known as Primer Gobierno Patrio commemorates the May Revolution which took place in 1810.
National Flag Day
The National Flag Day, which takes place on the 20th of June, is a day to remember the founder of the Argentine flag, Manuel Belgrano,who died on 20 June 1820.This day is known as Dia de la Bandera by the locals.
Argentina’s Independence Day is celebrated on the 9th of July. This is the day when Argentina was declared an independent country in the year 1816.The locals call it Dia de la Independencia.
General Jose de San Martin’s Day
The next holiday, which takes place on the 17th of August is the Commemoration of General Jose de San Martin’s death. They call it Dia del Libertador Jose de San Martin. The honored General is credited with liberating Chile, Argentina and Peru.
Cultural Diversity Day
The Day of Respect for Cultural Diversity is celebrated on 8 October. It marks the arrival of the adventurer Christopher Columbus to South America. This holiday is not well received by the local indigenous tribes whose ancestors have lived in the region for many years before the arrival of Spanish colonialists. Christopher Columbus is seen as an explorer who opened the way for the colonization of the region. As such, the indigenous people have established their own holiday which follows the Cultural Diversity day on the 11th of October to protest the anniversary of Christopher Columbus’s arrival in the Americas. The Day of Cultural Diversity is known as Dia del Respeto a la Diversidad Cultural.
Day of National Sovereignty
The 20th of November is the Day of National Sovereignty. This is a day to commemorate the Battle of Vuelta de Obligado.In this battle, the French and British governments were fighting for their economic interests against the Argentine Confederation led by Juan Manuel de Rosas.For five years, the British and the French navy had been trying to block the supply lines to Buenos Aires from the sea, as an attempt to force Juan Manuel de Rosas to change his protectionist economic policies of charging high levies against foreign powers. The French and the British were also not happy with Juan Manuel De Rosas’s efforts to court the Paraguayan and Uruguayan governments. The battle ended with the British and the French governments giving in and recognizing Argentine’s sovereignty over its waters. On 20 November, 1974, Argentine declared a holiday to mark this episode. This is called Dia de la Soberania nacional.
Virgin Mary Day
The 8th of December is the “Immaculate Conception Day”. It is a day when the Catholic Faithful observe the conception of Virgin Mary. It is believed that when she was born, she was pure and without sin. The bible says all have sinned, referring to man’s fallen nature inherited from Adam and Eve, but Virgin was free of this sin. The day of the Immaculate Conception is known as Dia de la Inmaculada Concepcion.
Just before Christmas Day, the Argentines celebrate Christmas Eve also known as Nochebuena in the local language. This starts at noon on 24 December.
Christmas Day is known as Navidad and like everywhere in the world, it is celebrated on the 25th of December in Argentina.
New Year’s Eve
The Argentina Calendar closes the year with New Year’s Eve also known as Fin de Ano.