National Day in Austria in 2019

National Day in Austria in 2019
  How long until National Day?
This holiday next takes place in 38 days.
  Dates of National Day in Austria
2021 Austria Tue, Oct 26 National Holiday
2020 Austria Mon, Oct 26 National Holiday
2019 Austria Sat, Oct 26 National Holiday
2018 Austria Fri, Oct 26 National Holiday
2017 Austria Thu, Oct 26 National Holiday
  Summary
Austria's National Day commemorates the Declaration of Neutrality enacted on 26th October 1955
  Local name
Nationalfeiertag

When is Austria's National Day?

Austria's national holiday on 26th October. This public holiday commemorates Austria's Declaration of Neutrality in 1955.

History of Austria's National Day

The Declaration of Neutrality was a declaration by the Austrian Parliament declaring the country permanently neutral. It was enacted on 26 October 1955 as a constitutional act of parliament.

The declaration was a direct result of the allied occupation by the Soviet Union, the United States, the United Kingdom and France between 1945 and 1955. The Soviet Union would not have agreed to the signing of a State Treaty in May 1955 if Austria had not committed itself to declare its neutrality after the allied forces had left the country. The final foreign troops left Austria on 25 October 1955.

Since 1955, neutrality has become a deeply ingrained element of Austrian identity. Legally, Austrian neutrality is both part of the Austrian constitution and of international law. There are some debates as to whether Austria could change this neutral status on its own account and whether Austria is still truly neutral, given it is a member of the EU.

How is Austria's National Day celebrated?

The day is celebrated each year with a series of events in Vienna:

  • the Federal President and the Federal Minister for Defense attend a Mass on the Heldenplatz
  • the Federal President followed by the Federal Government lay wreaths at the tomb of the unknown soldier in the Crypt of the outer Burgtor
  • a special meeting of the Council of Ministers is held
  • the government attends a Concert for Austria at the Vienna Staatsoper and
  • finally the new recruits of the Austrian Armed Service are sworn in.

On National Day, Austrian citizens can visit any federal museum for free. Various institutions also traditionally open their doors for the day (ie. the Federal Chancellery). Around the country so called "marches for fitness" are organized to raise awareness among the population about the benefits of exercise and fitness.

Around the world Austrian Embassies celebrate National Day by holding receptions for Austrian citizens.

Did you know?

Three facts about National Day

The name Austria derives from a Germanic word meaning 'eastern realm'.

Austria is a neutral country and the only continental European Union nation that is not a member of NATO.

Arnold Schwarzenegger, Hollywood actor and former governor of California, was born and grew up in Austria.

More facts about National Day

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