Navruz - Beginning of New Life

This is one of the most ancient holidays on Earth, symbolizing the beginning of a new life. The official status of Navruz was acquired by the Achaemenids in the Persian Empire (VI-IV centuries BC). Navruz Festival was included in UNESCO List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in September 2009, and in February 2010 the UN General Assembly declared March 21 the International day of Navruz. 

Although the celebration of Navruz is spread among Muslims, it is not a religious, but rather a national holiday, which is connected with spring, the beginning of agricultural work, the awakening of nature, and the onset of warm days. It is also associated with the cult of the Sun and the ancient Persian prophet Zarathushtra. The sacred book of the Zoroastrians Avesta is the oldest source, where the celebration of Navruz is mentioned. According to the teachings of Avesta, people should celebrate every spring the appearance of life on earth, which was born "in six kinds": the sky, water, earth, plants, animals, and people. On that day Zarathushtra was chosen by God to bring people happiness.

The importance of this period of the year gave rise to many traditions and customs. People begin preparing for Navruz a month ahead - especially Tuesdays are considered to be important. Each of the four Tuesdays has its name according to the natural elements (water, fire, earth, and wind). Once they are awakened, the fifth and the main element opens up: a new bright day - Navruz, the complete revitalization of the earth. Moreover, they say that on the days of Navruz, angels bring abundance and prosperity to those who have pure thoughts and clean houses. Therefore, people thoroughly clean their houses. 

On 21st of March, relatives gather together and share holiday dinner. They cook many tasty dishes,

the most popular among them are polov with dried fruits and sumalak - a wheat cream. Besides, guests on that day are offered to try a dish with sprouted grains. This ritual symbolizes reconnection with the nature and life in general. 

Furthermore, children run into their neighbors’ doors and sing songs dedicated to Navruz, and elders give them sweets for that. In addition, young adults arrange horse riding games that include Kyz kuumay (competition among men who have to catch a running girl), Enish (fighting on horses), and Jamby Atuu (archery).

Ulysse Tour offers a unique tour, dedicated to Navruz Festival. The route of the program goes through small mountain villages so that travelers get the full perception of authentic lifestyle and the holiday event. 

You are invited to check out the related tour, called Navruz Festival.

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