Source:UK public holidays and traditional celebrations
'Public holidays are a big part of UK culture. There aren't many, so when they do come along everyone is determined to make the most of them - whether it's a snow fight at Christmas, a carnival in May or ice-cream on the beach in August.'
The main UK public holidays are at Christmas, Easter and New Year. There are also several bank holidays when banks and many work places are closed for the day. The dates of UK public holidays differ slightly each year and the four UK countries have different numbers of bank holidays in total – eight in England and Wales, nine in Scotland and 10 in Northern Ireland.
Visit the Directgov website for a full list of bank holidays in the UK over the next three years:
Directgov - public services all in one place
Traditional UK celebrations
One of the best ways to experience UK tradition is to join in with one of the many festivals taking place throughout the year:
• Bonfire Night (5 November) – Celebrate the foiling of Guy Fawkes’ attempt to blow up the Houses of Parliament. Experience spectacular fireworks and blazing bonfires as you tuck into some delicious traditional food in organised events across the country.
• Burns Night (usually 25 January) - Get together with your fellow students and celebrate the life and works of Scottish writer Robert Burns with a traditional Burns Supper of haggis, neeps and tatties.
• Eisteddfod Festival (early August) – The largest cultural event of its kind in Europe, the Eisteddfod is a Welsh celebration of music, literature and performance. Enjoy a great mix of talent competitions, concerts, plays and exhibitions.
There are many more traditional UK celebrations and festivities for you to enjoy all year round. Your institution or student union are likely to organise activities to help you celebrate some of the major events, or you could check your local newspaper listings to find out what’s happening in the UK region you’re studying in.