This holiday to Malta is most commonly associated with achievements of the labor movement. The holiday may also be known as May Day or International Worker’s Day. The 1st of May date is used because in 1884 the American Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions demanded an eight-hour workday, effective the 1st of May 1886. This resulted in a general strike and the Hay market Riot of 1886, but eventually also in official sanction of the eight-hour workday.

May first is celebrated as Labor Day in most countries around the world. In the United Kingdom the bank holiday isn’t fixed at May 1st, but instead is observed on the first Monday in May.

labour day holiday in malta

1st of May – The Most Important Holiday for Everyone

In 2016, May Day falls on a Sunday which will cause some disruption in the days after 1 May. For a comprehensive list of who is off on what days for May Day.

In the 20th century, the holiday received the official endorsement of the Soviet Union, and it is also celebrated as the Day of the International Solidarity of Workers, especially in most Communist states. Celebrations in communist countries during the Cold War era often consisted of large military parades with the latest weaponry being exhibited as well as mandatory shows of common people in support of the government.

Curiously (given the origin of the 1st of May date), the United States celebrates Labor Day on the first Monday of September (1 May is Loyalty Day, a legal but not widely recognized holiday in the United States). There is some suggestion that the reason for this was to avoid the commemoration of riots that had occurred in 1886. The adoption of May Day by communists and socialists as their primary holiday have been suggested as another reason that further increased official resistance to May Day celebrations in America. Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the Netherlands also celebrate Labor Day on different dates; though that has to do with how the holiday originated in those countries. May Day has long been a focal point for demonstrations by various communist, socialist, and anarchist groups.

The 1st of May in Malta was also a pagan holidays in many parts of Europe, Its roots as a holiday stretch back to the Gaelic Beltane. It was considered the last day of winter when the beginning of summer was celebrated. During Roman times, 1 May was seen as a key period to celebrate fertility and the arrival of spring. The Roman festival of Flora, the goddess of flowers and the season of spring, was held between 28 April and 3 May.

Labor Day in other EU Countries

1st of May in Malta


Traditional English May Day rites and celebrations include Morris dancing, crowning a May Queen, and dancing around a Maypole; festivities which made it a popular seasonal celebration in medieval England.


Labor Day was established as an official holiday in 1933 after the Nazis rose to power. It was supposed to symbolize the new found unity between the state and the working classes. Ironically, just one day later, on May 2 1933, all free unions were banned and dismantled. But since the holiday had been celebrated by German workers for many decades before the official state endorsement, the NSDAP’s attempt to appropriate it left no long-term resentment.


In Sweden May Day is also a Christian celebration; the Mass of Saint Walburga or Walpurgis Night (also celebrated in Germany) is celebrated on the evening of April 30th.


A key May Day celebration in Italy is the annual Concerto del Primo Maggio which takes place in Rome and is attended annually by more than half a million people.



First of all Malta is a country with too much churches and when it comes to holidays then Malta is number one in the World. They got 360 churches all around the island. If you visiting Malta for the holidays then you are doing great job with yourself. See you soon at Comino, Blue Lagoon to enjoy in our main holiday for the employees and workers too.

WholeMalta Team.