Info Shymkent - Happy Nauryz Holidays!

Nauryz – What is it about?

Nauryz holidays are coming to Central Asia. But what means Nauryz? And what’s going on in these days? Info Shymkent will have a look.

Nauryz means “new day” and is a very important holiday for Kazakhs. The 21st March is when day and night have the same length – called the spring equinox.

This day is the beginning of Spring and the new Kazakh year. So past offences are forgiven and everybody makes wishes for a new beginning, for a new Year.

Info Shymkent - Traditional meet Modern during Nauryz
Tradition meet Modern during Nauryz holidays

Nauryz symbolizes also fertility, happiness, friendship, goodness and wealth, happiness and love.

Shymkent becomes a festival centre and traditional Yurts are erected in the streets and places – especially in Arbat. Inside of the Yurts visitors can find big tables filled with very much delicious Kazakh dishes like Beshbarmak, Kuyrdak, Baursak and – only during Nauryuz – Nauryz-kozhe.

Nauryz-kozhe is a nutritional rich soup that is cooked from seven ingredients: meat, water, flour, butter, rice or corn, salt and milk. Each ingredient of the dish symbolizes one quality for life: joy, success, intelligence, health, wealth, agility and security. By the way – the seven is a very important number for Nauryz. Not only Nauryz-koshe has seven ingredients. The soup will be put in seven bowls. Each person should invite seven guests and should visit seven other houses.

Table in Yurt during Nauryz Celebrations
Table in Yurt during Nauryz Celebrations

Around the Yurts many performances and celebrations take place. It’s a great time for foreigners to learn more about the Kazakh culture. Many Kazakhs wearing traditional dresses, listen to Kazakh songs and play on Kazakh musical instruments like the Dombra.

Info Shymkent - Dances with traditional kazakh dresses during Nauryz
Many dance performances are shown during the holidays.

Nauryz is also a holiday with very much games. So young people and kids likes to use the Altybakan – a large hanging swing were two people standing on one wooden board. Mans take part on the horse games “Kyz-kuu” and “Bayga”. You can watch these games in the hippodrome next to Shymkent Zoo and Bajdibek Monument during the public holidays.

Many musicians give also open air concerts in Shymkent during the holidays. Often the celebrations are completed by a beautiful firework.

A very interesting fact is that Nauryz was included in the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by the UNESCO in September 2009.

We hope you could learn more and we wish you already some beautiful holidays with your family and friends. Koktem tudi!

It’s a pity that celebrations, events and parties are cancelled this year because of the Corona crisis. But please stay health and stay save!

More Information: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nowruz