Marking the start of a new year according to Gregorian calendar, New Year is a public holiday in many countries. It represents the beginning of a new period in people’s life full of high hopes for a brighter future. New Year is the most favorite holiday in Armenia, too.
New Year celebrations in Armenia
New Year’s Day celebrations vary widely across different cultures. Most people in Armenia prefer welcoming New Year with family. At the stroke of midnight on the 31 December people drink and toast with champagne.
In 2020 Yerevan has a lot to offer its residents and guests of the city for New Year and Christmas holidays. This year the celebrations started from the 21 December, when the lights of the main Christmas tree were lit during an amazing show. The decorations of the square also include a fairy tale town in the fountain area.
The main event will feature renowned Bosnian musician Goran Bregović, who will give a live performance on New Year’s Eve on the Republic Square. By the way, don’t forget to visit the stunning Christmas market organized in Yerevan 2800th park!
Armenian New Year Traditions
New Year in Armenia is a unique family celebration with special traditions. The most typical one is the guest-host tradition. Armenians cannot imagine this holiday without receiving guests.
Amazing dishes and cookies
It’s worth mentioning that the most important part of the celebration is the festive table. Armenian housewives prepare lots of delicious dishes for their families and guests. One of the most popular dishes for New Year is dolma – grinned meat wrapped in a grape leaf or cabbage. As New Year was traditionally a fasting period Armenians still use to prepare Pasuts dolma ( Lenten dolma ) – red beans, green peas, lentils and rice wrapped in a cabbage leaf.
The inseparable part of New Year celebration are traditional cookies: gata and pakhlava. Armenians believe that gata is a symbol of luck and happiness. Armenians usually hid a coin inside and the one who gets the piece with the coin will have luck during that day. Another popular cookie among Armenians is Pakhlava: a sweet, layered pastry with chopped wallnuts walnuts, syrup or honey.
On Armenian New Year table you will also find various salads, pastry, nuts, dried snacks from all kinds of fruit, etc.
For the ones for whom guest-host tradition is not enough and interesting or for the visitors of our country there are lots of outdoor activities to enjoy during New Year period. Skiing in Tsaghkadzor ski resort, ice-skating in indoor and outdoor ice rinks, visiting Yerevan Christmas Market or Winter Park are one of the many options to make your stay in Armenia unforgettable.
Read more: Top 7 things to do in Armenia in Winter
Prepare yourselves and celebrate the most wonderful time of the year in Armenia!