Andean New Year in Bolivia in 2020

Andean New Year in Bolivia in 2020
  How long until Andean New Year?
This holiday next takes place in 193 days.
  Dates of Andean New Year in Bolivia
2021 Bolivia Mon, Jun 21 National Holiday
2020 Jun 21, Jun 22
BoliviaMon, Jun 22National Holiday (additional day)
BoliviaSun, Jun 21National Holiday
2019 Bolivia Fri, Jun 21 National Holiday
2018 Bolivia Thu, Jun 21 National Holiday
2017 Bolivia Wed, Jun 21 National Holiday
  Summary
Traditional date of Aymara New Year and the winter solstice. Declared official holiday in 2010
  Local name
Año Nuevo Andino Amazónico

When is Aymara New Year?

This national holiday is always celebrated on 21st June. It has been a public holiday since 2010.

Also known as Willkakuti (meaning 'return of the sun') and called 'Año Nuevo Andino Amazónico' in Spanish, it celebrates the winter solstice in the Southern Hemisphere.

History of Aymara New Year

In the Southern Hemisphere, the longest night of the year takes place on 21 June, the winter solstice. Since ancient times, knowledge of the changing seasons was vital to farmers in the region. No more so, than in the harsh highlands of the Andes. The winter solstice marked a welcome end to Winter and also the start of the new agricultural season.

Did you know?

The word Solstice comes from the Latin ‘solstitium’ meaning ‘Sun stands still’ because the movement of the Sun’s path north or south appears to stop before changing direction

At key places such as Tiwanaku, the imposing megalithic structures are said to have been designed with astronomical dates in mind, such as the Gate of the Sun, whose markings are meant to represent the solstices and equinoxes. Even today, the ruins at Tiwanaku is the main venue for marking the solstice with thousands of Bolivians and tourists coming to see the early morning sunrise on 21 June.

The new declaration of the new holiday has not been without its opponents. Only 20% of the population of Bolivia would be considered ethnically Aymaran, so it has been questioned as to why the whole country, consisting of over 30 ethnic groups, gets a holiday to mark this regional cultural event. Others have pointed out that there is little evidence that the Aymarans celebrated the winter solstice.

As Aymara New Year a national holiday, all public and private institutions, companies and schools will be closed on this day.

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