Broadcasting, Programming, List

Top 15 Most Celebrated Holidays Around the World

There are so many different holidays celebrated around the world. And, with each holiday, there is an opportunity to potentially have some special programming on your Live365 radio station. So, what are the most celebrated holidays? We've listed 15 of them below as well as a quick description and programming suggestion for inspiration.

Valentine's Day

When: February 14

Originating as a Western Christian feast day honoring Saint Valentine, Valentine's Day is now recognized as a celebration of romance and love in many regions of the world.

Programming Suggestion: Love songs


When: March/April/May

Easter commemorates the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, which is described in the New Testament of the Bible. The celebration is often characterized by feasts, Easter eggs, and the Easter Bunny.

Programming Suggestion: Worship music


When: December 25

Marking the birth of Jesus Christ, the day is a religious and cultural celebration around the world. Both Christians and non-Christians alike celebrate the holiday that is characterized by Christmas trees and decorations, Santa Claus, feasts, and gift giving.

Programming Suggestion: Holiday music


When: 4th Thursday in November (U.S.)

Prayers of thanks and various special ceremonies characterize Thanksgiving in the countries in which the holiday is celebrated. The day is typically celebrated with a feast.

Programming Suggestion: Songs with themes of thankfulness, friendship, family, togetherness, etc.

St. Patrick's Day

When: March 17

Taking place on the day Saint Patrick, the foremost patron saint of Ireland, died, the holiday is a cultural and religious celebration typically involving green attire, shamrocks, and alcohol consumption.

Programming Suggestion: Irish music, party music mix


When: October 31

Halloween begins the three-day observance of Allhallowtide, which is dedicated to remembering the dead, including saints (hallows), martyrs, and all the faithful departed. Traditions include trick-or-treating, wearing costumes, pumpkin carving, and visiting haunted attractions.

Programming Suggestion: Hard rock & metal music, music with spooky-sounding production, scary stories

New Year

When: January 1

New Year's celebrations commemorate the beginning of the new calendar year. In particular, New Year's Eve is usually marked by the ball drop, alcohol consumption, and fireworks.

Programming Suggestion: Party music mix

Chinese New Year

When: 1st day of the first month of the Chinese calendar (between January 21 and February 20)

Chinese New Year is the festival that celebrates the beginning of a new year on the traditional Chinese calendar. The celebration is often characterized by a dinner, fireworks and firecrackers, and red envelopes for money exchange.

Programming Suggestion: Classical musicians from China, C-Pop, educational talk on the holiday and its traditions

Independence Day (U.S.)

When: July 4

Independence Day, also known as the Fourth of July, is a federal holiday in the United States marking the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. Families typically celebrate the holiday with fireworks, a picnic or barbecue, alcohol consumption, and the colors of the American flag.

Programming Suggestion: Songs about America, songs with themes of patriotism


When: September/October

Oktoberfest is the world's largest Volksfest (beer festival and traveling funfair) and is held in Munich, Bavaria, Germany. Other cities around the world hold celebrations modeled after the original Munich event. Celebrations involve alcohol consumption (specifically beer), parades, food, and dancing.

Programming Suggestion: Traditional German brass band styles, polka, party music mix

Día de Muertos (Day of the Dead)

When: November 2 (generally celebrated October 31-November 2)

Día de Muertos is a Mexican holiday and involves family and friends gathering to celebrate and remember friends and family who have died. Typically, the celebration includes the creation of altars to remember the dead and traditional dishes.

Programming Suggestion: Mexican instrumental music, Mariachi music, educational talk on the holiday and its traditions


When: December

Hanukkah is a Jewish festival commemorating the rededication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem. It is characterized by the successive lighting of eight candles as well as gift exchange and music.

Programming Suggestion: Hanukkah songs, educational talk on the holiday and its traditions

Ramadan and Eid al-Fitr

When: April/May/June

Eid al-Fitr, also known as "Festival of Breaking the Fast," is a religious holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide that marks the end of the month-long fasting of Ramadan. It is typically celebrated for 1 to 3 days, and includes an act of charity and prayer.

Programming Suggestion: Percussive and drum-based music accompanied by Islamic poetry, educational talk on the holiday and its traditions


When: November

The Hindu festival of lights symbolizes the spiritual "victory of light over darkness, good over evil, and knowledge over ignorance." It is generally celebrated for 5 days, and involves feasts, fireworks, gift giving, worship ceremonies, and home decoration of oil lamps or candles.

Programming Suggestion: Bollywood Diwali songs, educational talk on the holiday and its traditions

Bodhi Day

When: 8th day of the 12th lunar month of the Chinese calendar, or December 8 in Japan

Bodhi Day is the Buddhist holiday that commemorates the day that the historical Buddha experienced enlightenment. Traditions for the day vary, but can include meditation, a traditional meal, and study of the Dharma.

Programming Suggestion: Meditation music

Note that this is just a brief list and does not contain full information on any of the listed holidays. If you decide to have programming on your station based on a listed holiday, ensure that you conduct your own research to have a fuller and better understanding of the holiday, history, traditions, and music associated with the holiday.

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Article Image: A group of people gathered at a dinner table, raising a glass with meals in front of them. (fauxels via Pexels.)

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About Michelle Ruoff

  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania