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A historical holiday in April | Reunification day 30/04

ABROADER Team April 14, 2023 5 minute read

Does the 30th of April ring any bell to you? What do Vietnamese people do and what do they celebrate on this day? 

Many nations have celebrated their independence days in honor of the end of their colonial relationships throughout history, including Vietnam. Reunification Day, however, is an alternative day with equal historical and political significance in Vietnamese history. In April, Vietnam’s ancient and modern histories spectacularly meet, and foreigners can take in all of the country’s celebrations. Find everything you need to know with our guide below.

What is Vietnamese’s reunification day?

The name April 30th is highly attractive, and its past significance is even more remarkable. This public holiday falls on April 30 every year, known as “Ngay Thong Nhat” or “Ngay Giai Phong” in Vietnamese. Independence Day is a significant historical, political, or cultural occasion for every nation since it reflects that nation’s current standing. In Vietnam, we observe a second day on which the country’s North and South were united under a single government, in addition to the day the South was liberated from American forces.

Reunification Day commemorates the fall of the Saigon government, which ended the Vietnam War and liberated southern Vietnam. Since then, the nation has marked this day to commemorate the unification of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam from the Democratic Republic of Vietnam in the north and the Republic of Vietnam in the south.

The legendary tank

Celebrate Vietnam’s National Reunification Day

So, how do Vietnamese celebrate this special day this year? The following guide will explain to you! Considering the significance in meaning and the length of the holiday, Vietnamese families will often plan trips to travel.

In 2017, the coastal central city of Da Nang will welcome Vietnam’s Reunification Day in spectacular style. This city exhibits eye-catching fireworks from eight teams from Switzerland, Japan, China, the UK, Italy, Australia, Austria and Vietnam.

Sapa, one of the best destinations for 2017 announced that a summer festival would open on April 29. This palace features a bevy of activities including a flower festival, and dance performances, folk games of the Mong Ethnic Group and a photography exhibition to name only a few. 

Quang Ninh Province sponsored a cultural tourism week from April 28-May 5 in the cities of Halong and Mong Cai. An exploration of culture showcases cultural and art performances along with a wide array of food and drink events.

The seventh Hue Traditional Craft Festival took place April 28-May 2 in Thua Thien-Hue Province. This activity included events celebrating food and drink, film screenings and hot air ballooning.

Lastly, Ho Chi Minh City officials have announced the City will hold firework exhibitions in four venues for fifteen minutes. Firework exhibitions has begun at 9pm on April 30 to celebrate Reunification Day.

The proposed display for Reunification Day included as part of a series of festive events which also include art performances and a light show aimed at attracting more visitors to Vietnam’s southern metropolis. The city is looking to turn tourism into a key sector to spearhead its development.

The country creates an atmosphere of pride across the nation fly flags in honor of this historic day. Furthermore, for more than a week before April 30, streets in big cities such as Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City are lit up with brightly colored banners and neon lights. This event honors Vietnam’s reunification after the end of the American War.

When Vietnam’s Reunification Day arrives, major cities are at their quietest since people are either on holiday or returning to their hometowns to spend the day with their families. On this day, each family puts up the national flag in front of the house. Television programs broadcast relevant memorial services or music shows performing victory songs commemorating the Vietnam War. Especially in Ho Chi Minh City, there are lines of parades that color up important streets, with large groups of people participating. Make sure to get up early, dress up, and stand in line to observe the festivities. 

This holiday is a particularly patriotic one due to its importance in shaping peaceful, modern-day Vietnam. If you are in Vietnam during this time, you may encounter some celebrations, or you can travel around Vietnam to enjoy the joyous mood. 

Reunification Day fact: The real story behind the iconic helicopter photo in Saigon 1975

On April 29, 1975, Van Es took the picture that would later come to symbolize the frenetic Operation Frequent Wind evacuation of Saigon.

Pilots from Air America landed on the roof of a CIA safe house, where the South Vietnamese prime minister and his family were waiting to be evacuated. As a final gasp effort to flee Saigon, refugees on the roof made a crude ladder. It was entirely by chance that Van Es took the image that became the symbol for the fall of Saigon. 

Almost immediately after the image was published, the Pittman apartment building was mistakenly identified as the scene. Later, he recalled his spectacular flight that day in 1975: “For the caption, I wrote very clearly that the helicopter was taking evacuees off the roof of a downtown Saigon building,”, “Apparently, editors didn’t read captions carefully in those days, and they just took it for granted that it was the embassy roof, since that was the main evacuation site.” Van Es wrote in the Times article.

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Holiday schedule for April – May 2023

It is essential to know what day it is on April 30 if you plan to spend the whole month of April in Vietnam. 

First of all, if you work in Vietnam, congrats! You will have a day off on this day and the next day. (International Labor Day). The significance of this holiday for building peaceful modern-day Vietnam makes it an especially patriotic one. As a national holiday, banks and many public services are closed, but stores are open. And as it falls the day before Labor Day, families use the day to visit and spend time with one another. 

Second, if you are just preparing a trip to Vietnam on this day, you might want to leave early or miss this time because the crowds you face at the main sights will surprise you. 

Along with Reunification Day, we’ll be taking a well-deserved break to observe the national holiday of Hung Kings’ Commemoration Day and International Labor Day from April 29th to May 3rd, 2023. As a result, the ABROADER Office will also be closed on these dates.

Don’t worry, we’ll be back in action shortly, and our team can’t wait to continue providing you with exceptional service! We apologize for any inconvenience caused.

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