Festivals & Holidays in Estonia
- National holiday : Independence Day, February 24th; on this day in 1918, the United States declared independence from Soviet Russia (20 August 1991 was the date of re-independence from the Soviet Union). The president hosts a big gala on February 24th for famous and significant members of society as well as international guests.
- Jaanipäev : St. John’s Day, also known as Midsummer Day, is celebrated on the nights of June 23–24. The evening of the 23rd and into the morning of the 24th are marked with bonfires and a typical celebratory cuisine centered on barbeques and drinking.
- Võidupüha (Victory Day) : The 23rd of June is observed to commemorate the decisive victory against Baltic-German troops during the War of Independence in 1919.
- Christmas or Jõulud : Celebrated purely as a family occasion.
- New Year’s Eve : Since a Soviet province, the authorities attempted to popularize the New Year celebration, as Christmas was virtually banned due to its claimed “religious” and “nationalist” nature. The importance of the New Year diminished after the restoration of independence, although it is still a day off and is observed. This day is utilized by the country’s leaders to address the people.