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Kingsday: Long live the Oranjes!


Kingsday: Long live the Oranjes!

Koningsdag, or Kingsday, as you probably know, is a national holiday in the Netherlands that celebrates the birthday of the King. This year, King Willem-Alexander will be turning 56, and the celebrations are sure to be as lively and colourful as ever. But let's be real, Kingsday is mostly an excuse to party like there's no tomorrow. And who doesn't love a good party, especially when it involves dressing up in orange and drinking copious amounts of beer?

But first, a brief history lesson: Kingsday has been around for over a century, and it has gone through some changes over the years. It started as Princess Day in 1885 to celebrate the birth of Princess Wilhelmina, who would later become queen. Then it became Queen's Day, and finally, Kingsday in 2014 when Willem-Alexander took the throne.

The holiday is known for its rowdy celebrations, with people spilling out onto the streets in a sea of orange. But in recent years, there has been a push to make Kingsday more family-friendly. It's not as wild as it used to be, but don't worry, there's still plenty of fun to be had.

As every year, Kingsday celebrations will be held in cities all throughout the Netherlands, including Rotterdam. The King's Parade is one of the main events here this year for sure. It's like a giant parade, but with more orange and less marching. Instead, there will be a procession of floats and performers making their way through the city center. It's a great chance to see some of the local talent and get a taste of Dutch culture.

However, another fun Kingsday event is the vrijmarkt. It's basically a giant flea market where people sell all sorts of random stuff on the streets. And the best part? You don't need a permit! So, if you've been hoarding a bunch of useless crap in your dorm room, now's your chance to make some money off of it.

And if you're feeling hungry, don't worry, there will be plenty of food stalls serving up traditional Dutch treats. Stroopwafels, bitterballen, and of course, beer. Lots and lots of beer. Just be sure to pace yourself, or you might end up passed out on a park bench with a giant orange hat on your head.

Kingsday is the perfect excuse to immerse yourself in Dutch culture and celebrate the king’s birthday while letting loose and having some fun. It's a chance to dress up in orange, dance in the streets, and maybe make a little money on the side. Whether you're a local or an international, Kingsday is an experience you won't forget. So, grab some friends, put on your craziest orange outfit, and join in on the festivities. You won't regret it. With King Willem-Alexander turning 56 this year, the celebrations are sure to be bigger and better than ever before. So come and be a part of the fun!