What do we Celebrate in Summer and Why – 2023 Edition

In this 5 minute read, I explore the traditional summer seasonal celebrations in the UK, delve into some of the global traditions during the summer months and a couple of the more unusual things celebrated; as well as why.

June 2023 – Leanne Nuttall

I know a bank where the wild thyme blows,

Where oxlips and the nodding violet grows,

Quite over-canopied with luscious woodbine,

With sweet musk-roses and with eglantine:

There sleeps Titania sometime of the night,

Lull’d in these flowers with dances and delight;” – William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Such a beautifully descriptive monologue which accurately portrays the variety of floral blooming that the warm summer sun brings out in Britain. You can imagine the scents that are drifting through the balmy air of the wild thyme mixed with the musk-roses and honeysuckle.

Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream epitomises the humid dreaminess and magic that British summertime brings, with love in the air coupled with high spirits and an appetite for celebration!

What Is The Summer Solstice?

In simple terms in the Northern hemisphere when the sun is at its highest point, it becomes the longest day of the year with the shortest night and the most hours of sunlight. It typically falls between the 20th and 22nd of June, landing on the 21st this year (2023) marking the start of the season of summer which will last until September 23rd.

In the UK this gloriously sun filled midsummer day (known as Litha in the Wiccan calendar) is traditionally celebrated at Stonehenge where people gather together in nature to watch the sunrise, spending the day bathing in the light and warmth of the sun. They partake in a variety of ritualistic activities often involving herbs, decorating alters, lighting bonfires, setting intension and culminating in watching the sunset. These traditions differ slightly with Celtic areas opting for adding more flames (the sun is scorching hot after all) to their activities with wheels of fire and a ritual of jumping through rings of fire for luck – the higher they jump the luckier they may become.

Across the globe it is a time of year synonymous for honouring the sun and the life giving energy it provides.

Stonehenge 2018 at 8.51am
Stonehenge 2018 at 8.51am

What are the Traditional UK Celebrations in Summer?

After celebrating summer solstice, notably festival season begins in the UK which are often huge social events with plenty of music, dancing, positivity and making the most of the warm, sunny climate.

  • Glastonbury Festival – a 5 day enormous gathering of music, arts, craft and activities which has taken place at Worthy Farm in June since 1970

  • Happy Place Festival – is a fully immersive wellness festival which was started by Fearne Cotton back in 2019 and spread over two weekends in the summer to become a creative space for ‘self-love & happiness’, this year being held in July and early September

  • Lammas or Loaf Mass Day – a Christian celebration of the fruits of the first harvest held on the 1st August

  • Edinburgh Fringeknown as the world’s largest arts and cultural festival held in Scotland since 1947 and spans a lengthy three weeks in August

  • Camp Bestivalborn after the success of the 4 day long Bestival that used to be held on the Isle of White, this family friendly award winning event is now annually held in the grounds of Lulworth Castle on Dorset’s Jurassic coast every late July/early August

  • Reading and Leeds Festival – simultaneous events which take place on the August bank holiday with Reading being the world’s oldest music festival still in existence

  • Notting Hill Carnival – since 1966 at the end of August this massive street festival in London celebrates everything about Caribbean heritage from food, music, dancing to arts and culture

  • Manchester Pride Paradein late August this free event makes its way through the streets of Manchester in celebration of LGBTQ+ life and has been an annual event since 1985

What other Celebrations happen during the months of Summer across the Globe?


  • China – the Dragon boat festival is over 2,000 years old which is being held on the 22nd June in 2023 (sometimes earlier as based on the fifth day of the fifth lunar month of the Gregorian calendar) and marks the start of a 3 day long public holiday to commemorate the life and death of famous Chinese scholar Qu Yuan

  • MuslimsEid al-Adha which in 2023 begins at sunset on 28th June and continues for 3 days is known as the Greater Eid, to commemorates Abraham and his willingness to sacrifice his own son, (which Allah stopped and provided him with an animal to sacrifice instead) includes the practice of sharing that animal feast in three parts: one for the poor/needy, one for friends and the last for family

  • USA – Pride festival takes place on 28th June since the first festival took place in New York City in 1970 to celebrate the LGBTQ+ community


  • USA – July 4th is celebration of Independence Day (Labour Day) because of the 13 American colonies which signed the Declaration of Independence of freedom from British rule in 1776, notably marked with barbecues, bonfires, parades and parties

  • France – Bastille Day is July 14th and a national holiday (La Fête Nationale) to mark the uniting of the French people during the French Revolution against the monarchy in 1789 with fireworks and a military procession that travels down the Champs-Élysées

  • Phillippines – Sublian is a two week celebration culminating on the 23rd July in Batangueños for the anniversary of the city’s founding which dates back to 1988 and includes a ceremonial dance in honour of the discovery of the Holy Cross

  • Tokyo – since the 18th century the Sumidagawa fireworks festival (which now occurs on the last Saturday of July annually) commemorates and celebrates the lives lost after the economic crisis suffered during the Edo period

  • Saudi Arabia – from July through August during the last lunar month of the Islamic calendar, the 5-6 day Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca takes place by Muslim people from all over the world and is considered to be the fifth pillar of Islamic practice to be undertaken at least once in a lifetime


  • Chinaalways held in August the Yi Torch festival’s main event is to light the torch to drive away bad luck and bring a successful harvest but also includes contests such as arrow shooting, horse racing and wrestling, with celebrations lasting up to 3 days

  • Spain – La Tomatina food fight started on the last Wednesday of August back in 1945 after an altercation in which some youngsters attending the Giants and Big-Heads figures parade ended up using vegetables off a market stall to throw at each other in their rage, but now it is a fun traditional event solely for entertainment after a week of summer festivities where plenty of events, parades and paella contents have taken place

  • USA – in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert the infamous Burning Man festival is held, at the end of August into September for 2023, and since 1986 has been the creation of Black Rock City each year by artists and makers from around the world celebrating with music, arts and culture; culminating in a ritualistic burning of the large wooden effigy known as the ‘Man’ on the penultimate night

  • India – Krishna Janmashtami (typically held in August, but in early September in 2023) is the Hindu holiday to celebrate the birthday of Lord Krishna the eighth reincarnation of Lord Vishnu with observers dressing in their best clothes, observing a day long fast, boys forming a human pyramid from which they throw a pot to break and also worshipping effigies of their god placing them on swings and alters and bathing them in milk, honey and jewellery

Burning Man August 2020
Burning Man August 2020

A Few Other Unusual Celebrations in Summertime (My Favourites)

  • June is National Candy Month
  • June 22nd – National Chocolate Eclair Day
  • June 27th – National Ice Cream Cake Day
  • July 7th – World Chocolate Day
  • July 25th – National Hot Fudge Sunday Day
  • July 28th – National Milk Chocolate Day
  • July 30th – International Friendship Day
  • August 4th – National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day
  • August 25th – National Kiss and Make Up Day
  • August 30th – National Toasted Marshmallows Day
  • September 6th – National Coffee Ice Cream Day
  • September 12th – National Chocolate Milkshake Day
  • September 13th – International Chocolate Day
  • September 17th – Wife Appreciation Day
  • September 21st – World Gratitude Day

Why not take a look at what other celebratory days are occurring in the summer months on the Days of the Year website (https://www.daysoftheyear.com/), if you have a birthday or anniversary during this season you could share it with a humorous or relevant day? I shared my birthday this year with International Day of Pink, World Hamster Day, National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day and National Liquorice Day!!

How can Bloomin’ Sweet Delights help you celebrate?

We create a variety of confectionery gifts suitable for that special person, occasion or celebration in your life including:

* Valentines * New Home * Easter
* Baby Showers * Christmas * Birthday
* Christenings *Children’s Parties
* Mothers & Fathers Day * Anniversary
* Graduation Good Luck *Hen / Stag
* Thank You * Wedding Congratulation

We can cater for specific taste buds – Sweet, Savoury, Dark Chocolate, Mint, Orange…Or those with special dietary needs such as Nut Allergy, Coeliac or Gluten Free. We have regularly made bouquets to suit vegetarian, dairy-free and Halal diets!

Whether it’s a bouquet, sweet cone, chocolate centre fabric flower, filled mugs or sweet jar, we have gifts as unique as the person they are being created for.

The confectionery won’t last long, but the feelings from the gesture will!

Thank you so much for reading!

What Can I Do For You?

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