Queen Victoria. Image credit: Wikipedia
Canada had been observing this holiday since at least 1845, originally falling on Victoria's actual birthday, 24 May 1819. Victoria Day is a federal statutory holiday, as well as a holiday in six of Canada's ten provinces and all three of its territories.
Canadians had been celebrating the birthday of Queen Victoria long before Confederation. It was in 1845 that parliament of the Province of Canada officially recognized May 24 as the Queen's birthday.
Following the death of Queen Victoria in 1901, May 24 was legally proclaimed as Victoria Day, a date to remember the late queen,
Canada is the only country that commemorates Queen Victoria -- who was deemed the "Mother of Confederation" -- with an official holiday. Federal government procedure dictates that, on Victoria Day, the Royal Union Flag is to be flown from sunrise to sunset at all federal government buildings including airports, military bases, and other Crown owned property across the country.
Several cities hold a parade on the holiday. Across the country, Victoria Day unofficially marks the end of the winter social season, and thus the beginning of the summer social calendar. it is during this long weekend that many summer businesses such as parks, outdoor restaurants, bicycle rentals, city tour operators open.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)