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What is Kings Day?

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posts: 212
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What is Kings Day?

Planning to be in Amsterdam end of April. My dates are in flux so can arrange to be there at that time. What happens on this day? Is it worth being there at this time?

13 replies to this topic
Colombo, Sri Lanka
Destination Expert
for Sri Lanka
posts: 33,028
reviews: 131
1. Re: What is Kings Day?

Hi there,

See threads like


Most tourists love to be there that time but a few would love to avoid it by all means; same for locals. So up to you to decide...

All the best,

<Erik> & [Sandya]

New York City, New...
posts: 2,020
reviews: 7
2. Re: What is Kings Day?

imo go, its a giant party,,

i have some photo on www.fliclr.com/photos/amsmatty these are from past queens day,,this will be the first kings day

Edited: 3:51 pm, October 05, 2013
Amsterdam, The...
posts: 7,567
reviews: 55
3. Re: What is Kings Day?

All explained here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koningsdag

In 2014 it will take place on Saturday 26th April.

- Huge party in Amsterdam

- Trains to Amsterdam will be like stuffed sardine cans, try to avoid them!

- the entire center will be packed with crowds, at least 600,000 extra visitors on top of the only 800,000 inhabitants, just to give you an idea of the impact of those crowds

- there will be special walking routes marked by colored balloons and marked on special maps that are handed out, these walking routes follow wider streets; narrow streets will take ages to get through or are sometimes clogged up entirely because of street parties

- people wear orange

- street parties, flea markets, games all over the place

- lots of funny things to see like dressed up animals, adults wearing orange wigs, pickle cutting contests, mini peep show with a shoe box in front of a girl's breasts, live music played by adults and the cutest kids, the weirdest items for sale, polaroid photo dating stands, etc etc.

- the canals full of boats

- some special big commercial parties with famous deejays and artists that attract young people from the entire country, and are best avoided in my opinion

- if the weather is sunny people start getting very drunk by about 3 or 4 pm and some fights may break out here and there

- a LOT of pickpocketing always takes place

- toilets have long queues and often charge ridiculous cost (1 euro or so)

- areas outside the center have lower key parties with a more mellow vibe, and are becoming more and more popular amongst the locals who want to avoid the drunken craziness of the center full of people from outside Amsterdam. For example Apollolaan in the southern part has huge flea markets, and Bredeweg / Hogeweg in the eastern part has a popular neighborhood party with flea markets, fresh food, kids games, live bands etc. And live opera for free on the night before (so probably on the 25th of April 2014).

All in all it is a cultural experience you either want to fully dive into, or run for your life from. Indeed, as Erik says, that also counts for the Dutch: many Amsterdammers flee the city; others love it and party all day; hundreds of thousands travel to Amsterdam especially to participate. It completely depends on your personal taste.

Google Images gives you quite a good impression: http://bit.ly/1aXKCIK (it used to be called Queensday but we have a king now.)




Edited: 10:02 pm, October 05, 2013
Amsterdam, The...
posts: 7,567
reviews: 55
4. Re: What is Kings Day?

Some more images:

- Vondelpark is for kids on that day: http://bit.ly/1e1KABl

- The flea markets and games: http://bit.ly/15TfBCe

New York City, New...
posts: 2,020
reviews: 7
5. Re: What is Kings Day?

last year the canal's seemed to be less crowded,, from past Queens day

Edited: 10:09 am, October 06, 2013
Baltimore, Maryland
Destination Expert
for Amsterdam
posts: 8,426
reviews: 8
6. Re: What is Kings Day?

I am not much of a drinker.

I hate crowds.

Orange may be my least fav color.

Kings Day is not to be missed.

And yes I miss saying Queens Day

Worth a go at least once. And once was enough for me. But well worth it.

Edited: 11:16 am, October 06, 2013
posts: 1,229
reviews: 67
7. Re: What is Kings Day?

I am a republican, with a small "r". That is: I think monarchy is an anachronism which unhelpfully plants a model of un-earned privilege at the heart of our society. But I loved Queen's Day and I expect to love King's Day. Unless you are particularly nervous about crowds, I would make it part of your holiday. It's one big party and there is actually very little trouble (as compared with, say, Notting Hill Carnival in London).

Somewhere in the country the king will go walkabout, playing imbecilic games and trying not to be outshone by his wife, but everywhere else we're just having a party.

Buy your King's Day t-shirt here: http://goo.gl/zZ5xgC

Mr Other


Edited: 5:28 am, October 07, 2013
Amsterdam, The...
posts: 7,567
reviews: 55
8. Re: What is Kings Day?

Ah well, I don't know what is worse, a benign king such as ours, or a president the likes of Berlusconi (good riddance) or Putin...

Amsterdam, The...
Destination Expert
for Munich, Amsterdam
posts: 6,155
reviews: 1
9. Re: What is Kings Day?

I think Berlusconi was having more fun during his Bunga Bunga parties than when our King has to do games like throwing empty toilet pots.....

posts: 1,229
reviews: 67
10. Re: What is Kings Day?

HaHa, Gro! Maybe Queen's Day should be renamed Bunga-Bunga Day.

(Berlusconi was prime minister, Cecilia. When he was democratically removed, an elected president oversaw the process by which a new prime minster was chosen. It's not perfect, but at least they can be got rid of!)

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