Independence Day in Guatemala

Guatemalan Independence Day is a holiday that’s observed annually every September 15th. It’s a day that commemorates this country’s independence from Spanish rule in 1821 under the Act of Independence of Central America. This is a holiday that’s a public day in Guatemala, so the general population has the day off and schools, businesses, and non-essential government offices are closed for the day.

It’s also a day on which there are a lot of different activities going on including parades, concerts, plays, dance routines, street foods, and street parties. And as is the case with many holidays celebrating a country’s independence, there’s a fireworks display at the end of the day.

The History Of Guatemalan Independence Day

Although the region that is now known as Guatemala was once a part of the Mayan civilization and was home to various indigenous groups, the Spanish would end up conquering the region during the first half of the 16th century. This would make the area a viceroyalty of New Spain.

This region remained under Spanish control for hundreds of years, but then their control began to weaken during the late 18th and early 19th centuries. This is due to the Peninsular War in Europe, as well as local juntas revolted against the rule of King Joseph, the brother of Napoleon who was installed as the ruler of Spin by the French in 1808.

Eventually, all of this came to a head and on September 15th, 1821, the Act of Independence of Central America was declared by Guatemala. The region would briefly become a part of the Mexican Empire, but in 1823 they ceded to become the Federal Republic of Central America.

Observing Guatemalan Independence Day

Since this is a public holiday, people have the day off and many schools, businesses, and government offices are closed. It’s a day for the people of Guatemala to show off their patriotism and celebrate their freedom. As a result, the Guatemalan flag is raised everywhere possible, there are parades all across the country, and there are traditional marimba routines performed in traditional dress.

Where is it celebrated?
Guatemala (National holiday)
When is it?
This year (2023)
September 15 Friday
Next year (2024)
September 15 Sunday
Last year (2022)
September 15 Thursday