List Of Public Holidays In Kenya 2019

Do you know that the world largest lake overlaps in Kenya? This is a country regarded as the home of modern safari with her over 60 national parks and reserves doting the landscape housing Africa’s top big five animals found here; The lion, elephant, leopard, rhinoceros, and buffalo. Would you consider seeing the famed Massai who are valiant lion killer? Kenya is a tourist destination and as the largest economy in eastern and central Africa, Kenya is a business destination for investors. Which way to go? As an investor or pleasure seeker, this article will meet the demand of knowing some simply overlooked information, that can prepare you for the hitch-free journey to the land of the Harambee.

Public Holidays In Kenya 2019

Date Public Holiday Name Day
1st January New Year Wednesday
19th April Good Friday Friday
22nd April Easter Monday Monday
1st May May Day/Labour Day Wednesday
1st June Madaraka Day Monday
6th June Id al-Fitr Thursday
12th August Id al-Adha Monday
10th October Moi Day Thursday
20 October Mashujaa Day Sunday
21st October Mashujaa Day Observed Monday
12 December Jamhuri Day Thursday
25th December Christmas Day Tuesday
26th December Boxing Day Wednesday
31st December New Year’s Eve Wednesday

The government of Kenya in a 2010 constitution draft ratified the following holidays as the statutory public holiday in Kenya:

Kenya Public Holidays 2019


In continuation with the tradition adopted by 180 countries of the world as a legacy of the Roman emperor, Julius Caesar attempt to fix a uniform calendar across the Roman Empire in 45 B.C. The first day of the new year is observed as a new year day since that time. The first day of the Month January named after Roman god of gates and doors was always celebrated with pomp and joy even in Kenya. It is a national holiday in Kenya


The Julian calendar designed by Sosigenes, an Alexandrian astronomer under the commission of emperor Julius Caesar has Good Friday and the Gregorian Calendar introduced by the Roman Catholic Pope Gregory XVII in 1582 differs in the day of the Good Friday. While the Western Christian follows the Gregorian calendar, the Eastern Orthodox followed the Julian calendar. But the day is always ON A FRIDAY around the spring equinox around March and April. Kenya as a former colony of the United Kingdom aligned with the western Christian calendar. It is a day the Christian adherents believed Jesus Christ was arrested, tortured and crucified for the sins of the world. It is a solemn holiday for the Christians all over the world and even Kenya.

Public Holidays In Kenya

This is another religious international holiday adopted by Kenya. It is always on the Monday after the Good Friday.

  •    LABOR DAY [MAY 1]:

A group of socialist and labor parties known as Second International from across 20 countries of the world gathered in Paris in 1889 to adopt the 1st of every May as the International worker day to celebrate the labor forces around the world and to commemorate the Chicago Haymarket massacre of 1886 when a peaceful labor demonstration became violent and resulted in the death of several workers. Kenya also adopted the day as a national holiday to celebrate the Kenya workers.

  •    MADRAKA DAY [JUNE 1]:

Madraka from the Swahili language meaning power. Every first of June became known as MADRAKA DAY, for on this day in 1963, Kenya attained internal self-rule though not yet an independent nation with Jomo Kenyatta as the first prime minister.

  •    MOI DAY:

MOI DAY is a day adopted by Kenyans to celebrate the country’s second and popular president Daniel Arap Moi who was the longest-serving head of state of Kenya from 1973- 2002. In 2010, the Kenya parliament removed the day before the Supreme court in 2017 reversed the decision of the parliament.


Mashujaa is another Swahili word, meaning hero. Therefore, the day is a day earmarked by the constitution to celebrate the country’ heroes who labored for the independence of the country from British occupation. The struggle of independence was bloody with the Mau-Mau revolt. It was formerly known as KENYATTA DAY before it was changed by the constitution and Paul Ngai) who were arrested and incarcerated by the British government for been a member of the Mau Mau group, before he later rose to be the first prime minister and president of Kenya.


is a regional holiday of the Hindu faith in Kenya and with Kenya having a sizeable number of Hindu adherents, it is a notable holiday? It is an international holiday for the Hindu faith adherents who believed on that day Lord Rama, the seventh reincarnated Vishnu returned after a 14-year long exile and was therefore celebrated as the triumph of light over darkness and good over evil.


This is the day Kenya became a full-fledged country as they became an independent nation from British overlord in 1963 and a year later in 1964 they became a republic, so the day Is a double honor celebration of Independence Day and republic day. Though Jamhuri is a Swahili word for the republic.


Christmas day is the second most publicly celebrated holiday across the world second after New year day. It is a day of religious and non-religious connotation. For the mainline Christians it is the day Jesus Christ was born, but to the mainstream people, it is just a cultural day of fun and celebration. In Kenya too, the date is observed by all regardless of culture and religion.


The exact meaning and significance of this holiday are still shrouded in mysteries but what is agreed by all is that the Boxing Day celebration originated in England during the middle ages. But despite the chequered history, it is still adopted by sizeable countries of the world and with Kenya bean a former part of the United Kingdom, the legacy lives on as the day is observed as a public holiday in Kenya.


The Islamic faith holiday are as a result of the lunar cycle movement and because of the unpredictability of the cycle it varies and the dates are usually announced by the government of Kenya for the observance. The observed holidays of the Islamic faith include

  •    EID UL ADHA:

This is known as the sacrifice day when Prophet Ibrahim was ready to slaughter his son Ishmael as a sacrifice to God before God topped him and replaced the son died with a ram death, therefore every year on this day, the Muslims observed this day by slaughtering rams in commemoration of Ibrahim’s acts.

  •    EID UL FITR:

This is the day that marks the end of the Ramadan fast and begins the Islamic ninth month of Shawaal. This day is always a joyous day for the Muslims worldwide.

The Republic of Kenya is an east Africa country located on the equator, between two lakes, Victoria and Turkana, It is surrounded by three northern neighbors from West to East in this order; South Sudan, Ethiopia and Somalia; Tanzania to the South, Uganda to the west and the Indian Ocean to the east. This regional power in the eastern bloc of Africa derived her name from the Mount Kenya, sits on a 581,309 sq. km landmass with an estimated population strength of 48 million. This safari country is a multicultural country with the Kikuyu, Luhya, Luo, Kalenjin, Kamba among its major ethnic group. Kenya is also a multi-religious country with Christians, Muslims and the largest concentration of Hindu and Baha’i faith adherents in Africa. The political and economic capital of the country is Nairobi and other important cities include Garissa, Eldoret, Mombasa, Kisumu, Lamu, Kabarnet, and others. The current president is President Uhuru Kenyatta since 2013. And as a result of the 2010 referendum, 47 semi-autonomous counties were created under the administration of governors.

These are the public holidays ratified by Kenya’s 2010 constitution and when next you want to go to the Land of the Harambee, it will be an important article for your planning and I say Kwaheri


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