National Day celebrations follow a strict timetable only for official events. This is so convenient that everyone knows exactly where, when and what time the celebrations start.
Historically, National Day is considered the birthday of the Grand Duke. Even though none of the monarchs were born on that day, the holiday was finally fixed in the calendar at the end of June in the middle of the last century.
Fun fact: In 1840, during the reign of William II, National Day was celebrated twice. Celebrations were held on the 24th of August to mark the monarch's accession to the throne and on the 6th of December to mark his birthday.
The Luxembourgers start celebrating in advance. On the 22nd, the changing of the guard takes place at 4 p.m. in front of the residence of the Grand Duke. Accompanied by a military orchestra, the royal family itself is welcomed. They make their traditional journey to other Luxembourg towns.
The most colourful event of the evening of June 22 is the torchlight procession (Fakelzuch). This takes place in the presence of the Grand Duke and Duchess through the streets of the capital. The most colourful event of the evening of June 22 is the torchlight procession (Fakelzuch). The procession will start at 9:20 a.m from Grand-Rue and then travel down Rue du Fossé to Place Guillaume until 11 a.m.
The most awaited event of the year, the fireworks, will conclude the evening. At 11 p.m., the sky will be lit up for a few minutes by the first salvo.
A national holiday is celebrated the next day, June 23. At 10 a.m. there is a ceremony in the State Philharmonic Hall. This is usually attended by the Heads of State and Government, addressing the people. The ceremony is followed by a 21-gun salute. This signals the start of the festivities.
This number was introduced by an Act of Parliament in 2011. It is an act of equality between men and women. Traditionally, a cannon salute was also used to celebrate the birth of a child in the ruling dynasty. A boy was welcomed by firing 101 and a girl — 21. Nowadays the number of shots is always the same. The firing of cannons is also a part of other occasions: the birthday of the ruler, an honourable visit and others.
Game shows, parades, musical performances and other fun activities take place in all the main locations. For example, the City Sounds festival will take place in Glacis Square. The military will demonstrate their equipment and talk to guests at Rousegäertchen. On 23 June, the military parade will start at noon. The Grand Ducal and Grand Duchess stand close to the Place des Martyrs. From here you will have a good view not only of the procession itself but also of the first members of the state.
Parents with children should visit the traditional Spillfest. It's in Kinnekswiss Park and is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. There are over 100 workshops and other activities for all ages.
|The torchlight procession (Fakelzuch)||June 22, 9:20 p.m.||Grand-Rue, Ville Haute Luxembourg|
|Fireworks||June, 22, 11:00 p.m.||Pont Adolphe|
|Ceremony||June 23, 10:00 a.m.||State Philharmonic Hall|
|Parade||June 23, 12:00 a.m.||Place des Martyrs|
|City Sounds||June 23, 05:00 p.m.||Fouerplaatz|