Turkmenistan celebrates New Year’s Day with a public holiday every 1 January, as does most of the rest of the world. However, the celebrations really begin on New Year’s Eve and reach a high point with the turning of the clock from 11:59pm on 31 December to midnight on 1 January.
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New Year’s Day is a time of resolutions and starting fresh for some, while for others it is spent recovering from a big, late night spent with friends and family.
In Turkmenistan, there are two different new year’s holidays on the public holidays calendar. First of all, Turkmenistan celebrates the spring festival of Novruz, which is of Persian origin, at the Spring Equinox around 21 to 22 of March. This is the really big new year celebration of Turkmenistan and much of Central Asia.
On 1 January, too, Turkmenistan welcomes in a new year. This time, the whole world joins in instead of just Central Asia.
The centre of the 1 January celebration is in the capital city of Ashgabat. The tree-lighting ceremony actually takes place just before Christmas, but it’s called a “new year tree”. The city is full of concerts, circuses, performances, and various events every year in the period between Christmas and New Year’s Day. And, of course, there is a major fireworks demonstration in Ashgabat and smaller ones in other cities of Turkmenistan.
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