National Day in Slovenia is also known as Statehood Day, or Dan državnosti, and is celebrated on the 25th of June every year.
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This holiday is meant to commemorate Slovenia’s independence from Yugoslavia which was declared in 1991. Technically, the formal declaration for independence did not arrive until the 26th of June, but the holiday is celebrated on 25th to mark when the initial acts were considered for Slovenia’s independence. As a result of this declaration, the Ten-Day War began with Yugoslavia. Slovenia won that war.
The History Behind National Day in Slovenia
National Day in Slovenia is separate from Independence and Unity Day, a holiday held on the 26th of December to commemorate the 1990 official proclamation of voters choosing Slovenia’s sovereignty as a nation. Similarly, Croatia declared its independence from Yugoslavia around the same time and celebrates Statehood Day on the 8th of October. Many countries in this region have fallen under the control to a number of Empires in the last several centuries. Most recently, the Austria-Hungarian Empire controlled the area containing present-day Slovenia. This Empire collapsed at the end of World War I. Slovenia next became one of the six republics of Yugoslavia.
The Ten-Day War in Slovenia that led to its independence is also referred to as the Weekend War. This war was brief and immediately followed Slovenia’s declaration of independence. The war was fought between the Slovenian Territorial Defense and the Yugoslav People’s Army. It started on the 27th of June, 1991 and lasted until the 7th of July, 1991. The war ended with the signing of the Brioni Accords, but it also marked the beginning of the Yugoslav Wars across the region. These Yugoslav Wars are considered “ethnic conflicts” that occurred between 1991 and 2001 within the former Yugoslavian territory. Tensions increased as more and more republics within Yugoslavia declared independence alongside Slovenia.
How to Celebrate National Day in Slovenia
National Day marks a key point in Slovenian history. After centuries of being under the rule of a variety of empires and unions, Slovenia was finally able to declare its independence from Yugoslavia. This move not only established Slovenia as its own sovereign nation, but it also lent encouragement to neighboring republics to free themselves from the Yugoslavian rule. When the Yugoslav Wars ended in 2001, a number of new countries became recognised in the former Yugoslavia region. For the country of Slovenia in particular, this holiday is a time to celebrate Slovenian history and culture. It is a non-working holiday when Slovenian schools (including colleges) and businesses shut down to celebrate. The primary celebrations occur at the Republic Square in Ljubljana, the Slovenian capital. If you find yourself traveling in Slovenia at the end of June, you can look for a number of ways to celebrate this holiday:
- Visit the Republic Square to see the major festivities in the capital city of Slovenia.
- Watch some folk dance and hear some folk music around the city.
- Check out the National Museum of Slovenia for some Slovenian history.
National Day in Slovenia is the perfect opportunity to visit the beautiful countryside, explore the festivities int he city, and learn about Slovenian history and culture. Try some Slovenian specialty cheeses and meats, or even some olive oil fresh from the Mediterranean. There is a rich culture to explore in Slovenia; you will not be disappointed! Ljubljana is the heart of festivities on National Day, but any city or town across the country will give you a taste of the diversity of Slovenia during your stay.