Public Holidays in Tanzania - 2020

Tanzania Embassy will be closed on both Tanzanian and Korean public holidays. Please see the list below of public holidays in Tanzania.

New Year's Day, also simply called New Year or New Year's is observed on January 1, the first day of the year on the modern Gregorian calendar as well as the Julian calendar.

The Zanzibar Revolution (Arabic: ثورة زنجبار‎ Thawra Zanjibār) occurred in 1964 and led to the overthrow of the Sultan of Zanzibar and his mainly Arab government by local African revolutionaries.

When the island of Zanzibar gained independence from the British Empire in 1963, it was initially a constitutional monarchy with a sultan. The sultanate was overthrown, however, in 1964, ending five centuries of Arab domination of Zanzibar. It was a quick, but bloody, revolution in which thousands of ethnic Arabs and Indians were massacred.

Abeid Amani Karume was on the African continent during the revolution but was soon called back to Zanzibar to take part in the government. Soon, however, a power struggle developed, which ultimately led to Karume banning his opponent John Okello from Zanzibar and taking charge himself as president. Soon thereafter, Karume led Zanzibar into union with Tanganyika to form the new united republic of “Tanzania”.

Karume’s actions helped ensure Zanzibar would not align itself with the Soviet Union during the cold war, but he also had many enemies. He was mowed down by four gunmen on 7 April, 1972, in Zanzibar Town. Today, he is remembered every 7 April in the national holiday called, in full, “The Sheikh Abeid Amani Karume Day”.

Good Friday is a Christian holiday commemorating the crucifixion of Jesus and his death at Calvary. It is observed during Holy Week as part of the Paschal Triduum on the Friday preceding Easter Sunday.

The mainland section of modern Tanzania, Tanganyika, was colonised by Germany during the late 1800’s and became the bulk of German East Africa. But German control soon ended after Germany’s defeat in World War I, and Tanganyika became a part of the British Empire.

Zanzibar was controlled by the Arab Kingdom of Oman for a long time, but it also became a British “protectorate”, with its very own sultan. Zanzibar and Pemba was long a separate colony.

Tanganyika escaped from British rule in 1961, but Zanzibar did not become independent until two years later, in 1963. The unification of the two former British colonies was blocked by the existence of the Zanzibar sultanate. But the sultan was overthrown in a coup in 1964, which however, led to a Communist government being installed in its place.

Despite the Communist control in Zanzibar, the island nation united with Tanganyika only a few months after the fall of the sultanate. The name “Tanzania” combines the first syllable of the names of the two formerly separate states and symbolises national unity.

Union Day is a time of patriotic speeches by politicians and of parades by school children and various public and private organisations. A large parade is held in the capital city of Dar es Salaam, but there are many held all over the country.

Under Tanzania’s Labour Code, workers must be given a paid day off on Labour Day and other national holidays. If they can’t get off due to the nature of their job, then they must be compensated by a different paid off-day later in the year. Holiday pay is also prescribed by law, unless the holiday falls on a Saturday or a Sunday.

The main event on Saba Saba is the Dar es Salaam International trade fair. The fair is meant to promote the export of Tanzanian goods, and thus, international trade with the rest of the world.

Nane Nane is also sometimes called “Farmers’ Day”. It’s a time when the contribution of farmers and all involved in agriculture of all kinds throughout Tanzania are appreciated.

A week-long national Nane Nane Day fair takes place each year, but the location varies and rotates. And there are seven regional level fairs for Nane Nane that are put on simultaneous to the national fair. The fairs start on 1 August and run till 8 August, Nane Nane Day itself.

Not only are agricultural products put on display at the fairs, along with farm technologies and innovations of numerous agricultural companies, but there are also abundant food stands and marketplaces set up.

Commemorates the death of Julius Nyerere, the father of the nation, in 1999.

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