Nooruz in Kyrgyzstan in 2024

Nooruz in Kyrgyzstan in 2024

  How long until Nooruz?
  Dates of Nooruz in Kyrgyzstan
2024 Kyrgyzstan Wed, Mar 20 National Holiday
2023 Kyrgyzstan Mon, Mar 20 National Holiday
2022 Kyrgyzstan Mon, Mar 21 National Holiday
2021 Mar 21, Mar 22
KyrgyzstanMon, Mar 22National Holiday (in lieu)
KyrgyzstanSun, Mar 21National Holiday
2020 Kyrgyzstan Sat, Mar 21 National Holiday

Novruz celebrates the Persian New Year, and the beginning of Spring

  Nooruz in other countries
Nooruz internationally

Novruz celebrates the Persian New Year, and the beginning of Spring. Novruz means 'New Day'.

In some countries it may have a different spelling and be observed on slightly different dates. The details of these names and dates are shown on the table to the right.

Day by day guide to Novruz

History of Nowruz

This is one of humanity's oldest holidays, and although it may be often called Persian New Year, it predates the Persian Empire and can be traced back 5,000 years to the Sumerian and the Babylonian civilisations. Novruz begins on either 20 March or 21 March, on the spring equinox, when the days and nights are equal lengths, with days then becoming longer signifying the arrival of warmer weather.

The build-up to Novruz begins a month before the festival. Each of the four Tuesdays falling before Novruz is dedicated to a different element. First is Water Tuesday, where water renews nature. Next is Fire Tuesday which honours fire as a method rebirth. Then it is Earth Tuesday marking the revival of the earth. Finally, it is Wind Tuesday when the wind opens the buds and marks the arrival of Spring.

Fire worship forms an integral part of the celebrations with fires being lit on the four Tuesdays in the run-up to Novruz. On the last Tuesday, everyone has to jump over the fire as an act of purification.

Like a lot of spring festivals, this idea of purification and starting again is key. Indeed, before Novruz, activities based on renewal like spring cleaning, planting trees, make new clothes and painting eggs are popular.

On the day before Novruz, the graves of relatives are visited and tended, then the whole family will gather around the table to enjoy traditional dishes. The table will be decorated with a khoncha, a large silver or copper tray with Samani (wheat) placed in the centre and candles and painted eggs representing the number of family members around it. The feast will consist of at least seven dishes.

While not a public holiday in India, there are significant Parsi communities in Mumbai and Gujarat who follow Zoroastrianism and celebrate Nowruz. Parsis visit to the Fire Temple to offer special prayers. They also prepare festive delicacies and friends and families get together to celebrate the day.

On 30 September, 2009, Novruz was included into UNESCO’s List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage. On 23 February 2010, the United Nations declared March 21st the International Day of Novruz.

Nauryz Traditions in Kyrgyzstan

In Kyrgyzstan, Nauryz is an important holiday, where the day starts with mass festivities and music, including karnay, a national long wind musical instrument.

Cities and villages celebrate the holiday with concerts, including performances with traditional Komuz players, folk dances, and nomad games.

Similar to Nauryz kozhe in Kazakhstan, in Kyrgyzstan, people usually cook sumolok, a traditional Nauryz dish where the basic ingredients are water and wheat. It is similar to a wheat pudding made of sprouted wheat, flour, and vegetable oil.

Kyrgyz people play kok boru, a traditional game during which men riding on horses compete in an effort to take a goat carcass to the end of a playing field and win the opponent.

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