Updated: Apr 14
Wales - Rich in history and full of culture
For anybody who has ever visited Wales, it is clear that there is charm in every corner. There is a long history of Welsh celebrations, traditions and customs.
We’ve covered just a handful of dates that have been celebrated in Wales throughout the years.
A guide to celebrated Welsh dates
Dydd Santes Dwynwen (Pronounced dee-th sah-nn-tess doin-wehn)
Translated as St Dwynwen’s Day - this is Wales’ very own Valentine's day. It is named after St Dwynwen who became a nun after her father refused her love’s request to marry her.
This day is often celebrated by giving your love a Welsh love spoon. This is a wooden spoon carved using symbols to showcase your love for one another. Read more about Welsh lovespoons and their history.
Date: January 25th
Dydd Miwsig Cymru (Pronounced dee-th mew-sih-guh cuhm-ree)
Translated as Welsh Language Music Day - this is a chance to celebrate music in the Welsh language. This is for all genres of music, from folk songs to pop hits.
Date: February 4th
Dydd Gwyl Dewi (Pronounced dee-th goe-yul deh-wee)
This is one of the biggest national days in Wales where we celebrate the patron St David.
From a young age, Welsh children celebrate it by dressing in traditional Welsh costumes, learning about the history and taking part in other traditional competitions.
Date: March 1st
National Laverbread Day
This is a relatively new addition to celebrate the Welsh delicacy laverbread. It was created and launched by The Pembrokeshire Beach Food Company in 2022.
Date: April 14th
Calan Mai (Pronounced Cah-laan maee)
This is a Welsh May Day holiday to celebrate the start of May. Its origins date back to the time of the Druids. This day is celebrated traditionally with large parties and bonfires.
Date: May 1st
Royal Welsh Show
The Royal Welsh show is hosted annually and lasts for four days. It’s one of Europe’s largest and most famous agricultural spectacles.
It plays host to things like falconry displays, sheepdog trials and even motocross exhibitions.
Date: Towards the middle/end of July
Râs yr Wyddfa (Pronounced rah-sss ugh-rrr oi-th-va)
This Welsh race was originally held in 1976 and involves runners racing to the summit of Wales’ largest mountain - Mt Snowdon.
Translated to The Wyddfa Race, it draws professional runners from over 10 different countries worldwide.
Date: Usually late July
National Eisteddfod (Pronounced ey-ster-th-vod)
This Welsh celebration plays host to exhibitions for Welsh vendors and a national competition for the arts. Some of the competition types include national folk dancing, story and sound and musical performances.
It takes place in a different place in Wales each year and attracts huge crowds of around 150,000 people.
Date: Usually late July
This race is held yearly to celebrate the Rebecca Riots (between 1839 and 1843). In response to excessive toll gate taxes, disgruntled agricultural workers dressed as women to protect their identities and rioted. They named themselves Merched Beca (Rebecca's Daughters).
The annual memorial 5-mile race in the Preseli mountains has been held since 1977. The winner of the race is given the privilege of smashing a "tollgate" at the finish line.
Date: August 27th TBC
Calan Gaeaf (Pronounced kah-lan gay-av)
This is to signify the first day of Winter where traditionally it was marked to pay tribute to the dead by dancing around a bonfire wearing masks.
Similar to the Day of the dead, it was originally created with the belief that this is the day when the door between this world and the next was opened.
Date: October 31st
Mari Lwyd (Pronounced marry loe-d)
This translates roughly to ‘Grey Mare’ and is an ancient Pagan tradition said to bring good fortune for the coming year.
Although not celebrated widely anymore, you might still see some villages honouring the tradition by wearing a horse skull on a pole and carrying it throughout the streets.
Date: December or January
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