The Queen’s Birthday is a public holiday celebrated on the first Monday in June, making for a much-looked-forward-to June long weekend.
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The Queen’s birthday is actually on 21 April (1926) but it is celebrated on various dates across the commonwealth to fit with each country’s spread of public holidays. New Zealand is one of the six largest of sixteen Commonwealth Realms within the Commonwealth of Nations, which was formerly known as the British Commonwealth.
One of the official activities of this public holiday is the release of the Queen’s Birthday Honours’ List where the Queen makes appointments to the Order of New Zealand, which includes Orders, Orders of Merit, Dames, Knights, Companions, Officers and more. These appointments are nearly always based on a person’s services to the community or the nation.
The other special event of this public holiday is that it heralds the official opening of the ski season in New Zealand, something the country is famous for. The ski fields are popular because of their spectacular terrains, amazing scenery, varied snow trails and admired resorts.
Fittingly, Queenstown, situated on Lake Wakatipu at the foot of The Remarkables mountains, is one of the best-known ski destinations and, on this public holiday, brings many ski groups and families out for their winter-sports activities.