By Nigar Orujova
The most cheerful and long awaited holiday of Azerbaijan – Novruz Bayram is coming, bringing spring to the Land of Fire. The whole country will celebrate the start of the New Year- week-long celebration beginning March 20.
Novruz is a family celebration, when the entire family draws together around a well-laden table of delicious national meals and sweets. However, the other days of the holiday are spent visiting friends and family, strolling around the city or the countryside.
To enjoy the real pleasure of the Azerbaijani New Year you can find a family to visit during the festivity. As Azerbaijanis are well known for their hospitality, it could not be any easier.
Be ready to taste a lot of delicious food, along with the sweet symbols of the holiday: pakhlava, shakarbura, shorgogal and badambura. Try every delight of the holiday Khoncha, that symbolizes wealth and profusion, feast your eyes on freshly sprouted wheat of Samani – that means hope for an abundant harvest in the coming year.
Do not forget the egg battle, during which two people each take a boiled egg and knock the ends together. The winner is the one whose painted egg did not crack.
After relishing in the joys of family, amuse yourself outside, as Novruz is a time for many outdoor activities. The central attribute of the holiday is bonfire, and jumping over it, is considered an irreplaceable attribute of the celebration. This action signifies renovation and growing in strength.
On the night of the holiday, on March 20-21, you can join Azerbaijanis children and roam the neighborhood knocking on doors and leaving hats hiding nearby to gather sweets. This tradition may remind Halloween trick or treating, and they are similar indeed.
The city will also offer many entertainments, fitting every taste - walk through the festive Baku or visit Azerbaijan's blooming regions.
Novruz symbolizes peace and clemency, it is a time to forgive any offence and help those in need. Experience the scent of the holiday and spring and savor the renewal of the Sun.
Nigar Orujova is AzerNews’s staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @o_nigar
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