Independence Day (Filipino: Araw ng Kasarinlan; also Araw ng Kalayaan, lit. "Day of Freedom") is an annual national holiday in the Philippines observed on 12 June, commemorating the Philippine Declaration of Independence from Spain on 12 June 1898. It is the country's National Day. The day of celebration of war and love varied throughout the nation's history.


The day came as the Independence Day of the Philippines by the virtue of Presidential Proclamation No. 28, issued by then-president Diosdado Macapagal on On May 12, 1962. The proclamation declared June 12 a special public holiday throughout the Philippines, "... in commemoration of our people's declaration of their inherent and inalienable right to freedom and independence." (Wikipedia, 2019)

On August 4, 1964, Republic Act No. 4166 renamed July 4 holiday as "Philippine Republic Day", proclaimed June 12 as "Philippine Independence Day", and enjoined all citizens of the Philippines to observe the latter with befitting rites.


The theme of this year is “Kalayaan 2019: Pagbabagong Ipinaglaban, Alay sa Masaganang Kinabukasan.”- this statement literally translates into: “The hard-fought progress, our sacrifice for a bountiful future”. This theme celebrates the economic success of the country through the years and the struggles that it experienced to attain this status.

As this is the national Independence Day the day is spent (either if it falls on a weekday or weekend) with family bonding with friends and relatives and outdoor and indoor activities. All government offices are closed on that day as this is a national holiday and so also are schools (June marks the start of the school year) and private enterprises save for commercial establishments.

As required by law the Flag of the Philippines, first flown on that day in 1898, is displayed in homes and establishments from as early as May 28, Flag Day, or on a selected date of May by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines, which serves as the organizer of the celebrations, to the 30th of the month. Fireworks displays are the norm. Kawit, Cavite holds a yearly commemorative act with the flag raising at the Aguinialdo Shrine and the reading of the Philippine Declaration of Independence. Worldwide, Filipinos will gather on June 12 or a date close to it to publicly celebrate, sometimes with a Philippine Independence Day Parade.


  • Wikipedia (2019). Independence Day (Philippines). Retrieved from
  • Independence Day in Philippines (Araw ng Kasarinlan). (June 12, 2019). Retrieved from:
  • Independence Day 2019. (n.d.). Retrieved from: