• Nowruz: a Time for Celebration

Nowruz: a Time for Celebration

21 March 2013

Millions of Afghans are taking part in Nowroz celebrations across the country.

Nowruz- which means “new day” is an ancient festival marking the spring equinox and the beginning of the Persian New Year.    

It has its roots in ancient Persia (Ariana),  but is now celebrated by tens of millions of people across a huge region from the Kurdish areas of the Middle East to parts of China and India.

The festival was banned during the time of the Taliban, but was enthusiastically revived after 2001.   

The biggest Nowruz event in Afghanistan is the Guli Surkh or “Red Flower”  festival  in the northern city of Mazar i Sharif.  But Kabul also has major celebrations, with families meeting together to picnic, play top danda or other traditional games, or fly kites. 

Nowruz has its own special traditions.  The run up to the festival is used to clean houses, buy new clothes and shop for ingredients for special delicacies to serve at the New Year feast.

Nowruz is a symbol of the ancient concept of rebirth.  It represents reawakening, a new start, a time to live in harmony with nature and renew ties with family and friends.  

We at BAAG wish all our friends in Afghanistan a happy, prosperous - and above all, peaceful - New Year.

Nowruz hama Mubarak!