We landed in Almaty 20 March, the same day as the celebration of Nowruz. I have never been in a city when celebrated Nowruz so WOW I was up for a pleasant surprise! Nowruz (or Nouruz) is the Persian New Year. And here in Almaty, it was a real street party! Boiling with happy partying people, an old lady saw me while I took a picture of here, and then she comes right up and starts dancing for me.
if you ever have the opportunity to be in Almaty at Nowruz don’t hesitate to go, this is a street-party you really should experience. You will feel welcome and included here. One strange thing was the huge amount of police everywhere, they were lined up everywhere. If it was for the celebration or a VIP of some sort was in town I do not know.
I like happy street-parties in Muslim countries (multi-religious actually here in Kazakhstan). In any Western country, there would be a lot of drunk young people making the night less fit for families and kids. But here I could not see one drunk person. And somewhere about 22.00 in the evening, the show just stopped! No more music and the people in the street seemed to go home. Why end this nice thing at 22 in the evening??? I heard the young people did go to bars and disco, but I was tired to find out after the trip and went to bed myself.
Some facts: Nowruz is celebrated worldwide by various ethnolinguistic groups for over 3,000 years in western and central Asia, Caucasus, the Black Sea Basin and the Balkans.