Nauryz (Spring) Celebration

March 27, 2015
Courtyard of Learning Services Building (2nd and Vine)

You are invited to join us at the celebration of the Spring Holiday Nauryz organized by the students enrolled in the course “THE OTHER KAZAKHSTAN” at the University of Arizona.

"Nauryz in Kazakhstan" by Trevor Zeller  RSSS 195a, 2014


  • Nauryz is a very important holiday for Kazakhs, which marks the beginning of a new year.
  • It is celebrated several days starting from 21st of March, the day of the spring equinox.
  • Nauryz means ‘new day’, it is celebrated in the Great Steppes from ancient times.

Nauryz symbolizes goodness and wealth, happiness and love and a great friendship day, since this holiday is common for many nations.

  • During Nauryz celebrations, past offences are forgiven and forgotten and everybody makes a wish to leave all badness behind and bring renewal in the New Year.

Celebration of Nauryz

During the Nauryz holiday, large and small cities and villages become festival centers.

  • Traditional yurts are built in city centers and rich tables are laid down in each of them.
  • City squares get full of yurts, and many performances take place there.
  • Here one can learn about the culture and lifestyle of nomads and find people wearing beautiful national clothes, listening to Kazakh song, and playing of musical instruments.
  • In holiday exhibitions and fairs, traditional gifts and souvenirs are sold.
  • Usually young people gather around Altybakan, which is a large hanging swing, with colourful decorations, where songs are sung, and traditional games are played.
  • During Nauryz holiday, many famous stars give concerts in cities and the holiday is completed by fireworks

Dishes served during Nauryz

Nauryz kozhe is the most important of all meals during these days and a main symbol of Nauryz, since it is prepared specially for this day.

  • It is special for its unique recipe.
  • Traditionally, 7 different ingredients are added to Nauryz kozhe.
  • These ingredients include: water, meat, salt, milk or yoghurt, one type of grains, chosen from rice, corn or wheat, and others.
  • Seven ingredients symbolize seven virtues or qualities, such as joy, success, intelligence, health, wealth, agility and security.
  • During the celebration of Nauryz, the kozhe is offered to all guests in any city or village of Kazakhstan.
  • Many other types of meals made from milk products are also offered.

Interesting Facts

Between 1926-1988, Nauryz holiday was not officially celebrated in Kazakhstan (Kazakh Soviet Socialistic Republic in those days).

  • National Sports are played as a tradition on this day as well such as wrestling and tug-of-war.
  • Every house, every school and university, every institution try to decorate their buildings for the holiday.
  • Most of the decorations are made with the help of paper Kazakh ornament, painted rugs, beautiful banners, and other traditional things.