Bolivia Holidays & Festivals

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Many exciting Bolivia holidays, festivals, take place each year. Bolivians are adept at finding a reason for any type of celebrations or special occasions. You don’t have to stay long to find a Bolivian fiesta or carnival, along with many other forms of entertainment. In addition to national public holidays most of which take place with great pomp and circumstance, there are local and regional celebrations too.

Public holidays are days the local or national government recognizes and usually there is no work on these days. And finally, we have many more days that are unique to Bolivia, like National Protected Areas Day and even United Nations Days that are observed.

Bolivian festival and holiday facts, food, music, traditions and culture

Bolivians love a good party. Each year many additional special occasions are also celebrated in grandiose manner. Special occasions are events we celebrate that may or may not be recognized by the government. In most cases people continue to work on these days. Most of the special occasions celebrated in Bolivia are popular in other countries too. Many of these are well-known, such as Mother’s and Father’s Day, but in Bolivia even pets have their own special days.

In fact, Bolivia you’re even sure to find events being held for nearly every single one of the United Nations Days. You could build up quite a social calendar. United Nations holidays are special days set aside by the UN to remember or create awareness for certain issues like Earth Day, International Volunteers Day, AIDS awareness day, etc. In Bolivia many of these holidays are celebrated but you don't get a day off from work.

Church and State are theoretically, but in practice not, fully separate in Bolivia, numerous events are of religious, (primarily Catholic) origin; however, many are traditional to the various indigenous cultures of the area as well.

Sometimes Bolivian festivals are celebrated more than once in a year in different cities, like Alasitas (the Festival of Abundance in Bolivia) for example, which takes place in January in La Paz, but in September in Santa Cruz. Festivals are local or national holidays that usually center around cultural or religious observances or celebrations. They may be celebrated by all Bolivians or only some, depending on the region. In most - but not all - cases people do get days off from work for festivals such as Carnaval, San Juan, and others.

In addition, people often travel between towns and other parts of the country to partake in festivities and you may want to do the same. Many of the festivals I’ve listed are wonderful cultural events and attract a great many tourists. I’ll try to give you a brief description of each and some of the more interesting traditions and customs that are practiced. There is literally never a dull moment in Bolivia.

Learn More about Holidays in Bolivia

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