Danish traditions For Members

What's open and what's closed on Pentecost Monday in Denmark?

Richard Orange
Richard Orange - [email protected]
What's open and what's closed on Pentecost Monday in Denmark?
Only smaller convenience store-sized branches of Danish supermarkets will remain open on Whit Monday. Photo: Mads Claus Rasmussen/Ritzau Scanpix

Whit (or Pentecost) Monday, is known as anden pinsedag in Denmark and is a national holiday, meaning most workers get to enjoy a long weekend. Here's what you need to know about what's open and closed.


Anden pinsedag or pinsemandag, is an important festival for Denmark's Lutheran Church, commemorating the day the Holy Spirit descended upon the disciples of Jesus. Pentecost always falls on the seventh Sunday after Easter, and pinsemandag always falls the next day, this year on May 20th. 

Schools in Denmark are closed, so many parents are effectively forced to take the day off as well, but as it is a bank holiday or red day, most workers have the day off anyway. 

What’s closed? 


Denmark is strict with shop opening times on public holidays, with the Lukkeloven, or closing law, requiring most shops to remain shuttered on Whit Monday. 

This includes all major supermarkets, with only smaller local grocery shops with a turnover of less than 43.4 million kroner a year allowed to stay open.

Those that can stay open are likely to include smaller convenience stores from the Dagli'Brugsen and Brugsen chains, as well branches of COOP's discount chain 365discount, and smaller shops in the Kvickly and Superbrugsen chains.

The closing law allows the Danish Business Authority to grant some grocery stores in rural areas and holiday home areas to stay open on public holidays on a case by case basis, but if you're travelling out to a rural area, don't bet on anything being open.

Petrol stations are also allowed to stay open, as are shops selling bread, dairy products and newspapers, garden centres, second-hand shops and pawnbrokers, and market stalls selling food and household products.

But even smaller shops selling durable goods like clothes, shoes, or other items other than groceries must remain closed.

If you're planning on buying a more upmarket wine or snaps, you should be aware that specialist wine merchants will also be closed.



Your local borgerservice, the public-facing service desk at your local town hall, will be closed on Whit Monday, so if you need to pick up a new driving license, for example, you'll have to wait until Tuesday.


Most Danish primary care centres are closed. If you urgently need a doctor, you should ring the number of your local on-call doctor (lægevagt), emergency dentist or emergency psychiatrist, which you can find listed for Denmark's regional health authorities here.

The person on the phone will then decide whether you need to come into a hospital or emergency clinic for treatment or examination.

What's open?

Museums and galleries pretty much all remain open on Whit Monday, even those that close over the Easter period, as do restaurants, hotels and the like.



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