All you need to know about Pentecost in the Netherlands: 2023

The Spring season comes with all sorts of public holidays in the Netherlands, and Pentecost is right at the top of that list.

Pentecost, also known as Whit Sunday and Monday, falls on May 28 and 29 this year, so what’s there to expect from this holiday in the lowlands and what are its origins?

A brief history of Pentecost

Pentecost is a Catholic celebration and it signifies the day the Holy Spirit came down from Heaven and revealed itself to the Apostles.

The date it’s celebrated depends on the date on which Easter falls. But, it always happens on the 50th day after Easter.

The name Whit Monday finds its origins in its English name “Whitsunday”, which is an English name for Pentecost.

Whit Monday, which falls on May 29 this year, marks the final day of the Christian Easter season.

The day also commemorates the birth of the Christian Church and some maintain the belief that the first-ever Whit Monday was celebrated as early as the first century.

How is it celebrated?

Whit Sunday and Monday are usually celebrated with music festivals and markets spanning across the Netherlands.

Pinkpop is one of its most popular music festivals, usually held at Landgraaf for three days straight. It’s also the longest-running open-air festival in Europe.

It’s no wonder it attracts over 60,000 people and loads of famous musicians from around the world. 🎶

While many Dutch people don’t regularly go to Church, many make a point to attend it during the Pentecost holidays.

Other, less religious activities, consist of going shopping, enjoying some Dutch nightlife, visiting museums and eating out at restaurants

What are you planning on doing during this holiday? Tell us in the comments below!


Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in May 2020, and was fully updated in May 2023 for your reading pleasure.

Feature Image:Depositphotos
Vlad Moca-Grama
Vlad Moca-Grama
Vlad was born and raised in Brasov, Romania and came to the Hague to study. When he isn't spending time missing mountains or complaining about the lack of urban exploration locations in the Netherlands, you can find him writing at Dutch Review.

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