King's Day (former Queens Day) on April 27 is a really well kept secret in Holland and it is stunning how few foreign people know about it.

On the King's birthday in April the entire country has a party that lasts for days. It is the safest, most friendly thing you will ever experienced. All over Amsterdam the bars and restaurants are open and the city is full of people dressed in orange having a great time. The canals are all filled with boats and dancers are everywhere. There are rarely fights or even argumenst.  If only every festival was like this one.

 In the morning the city is turned into a massive street sale and later in the day there are carnivals pretty much everywhere. Night time is just insanely good fun.

Beer is sold on the street in small plastic glasses and they sell a weker than normal beer. It means you last longer and stay awake. Good thinking!

One thing you need to know is that it is not at all like the rest of the year. Hoards of pervs wandering through the red light etc. During King's Day Amsterdam is 100% Dutch. Of course there are always tourists but the Dutch know how to handle themselves really well. (Like on planes to America!) and they just take everyting in their stride.

King's Day has to be one of the most fun festivals. Highly recommended.