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Holidays in March 2023:
Holidays and Festivals Around the World

It is practically impossible to calculate the number of holidays celebrated around the world. Each country has its own important dates, interesting traditions, and customs that we either don't know anything about or know very little. Let's broaden our horizons and learn more about events in different corners of our planet! Permeet presents a selection of festivals around the world in March. So, what holidays are celebrated in the world in March of this year?

Baba Marta

Location: Bulgaria and European countries: Northern Macedonia, Greece, Albania, Romania and Moldova
Holiday: Baba Marta
Date: March 1
Status: National holiday
Purpose: To bid farewell to winter and welcome the arrival of spring

History of the holiday: The Baba Marta holiday is rooted in Bulgarian folklore, which tells the story of Baba Marta, a woman who harbored resentment towards her brothers January and February. The legend has evolved into fairy tales for children with various versions. According to one version, Baba Marta shakes out her bedding at the end of winter, causing the filling to crumble to the ground, signaling the end of snowfalls

Traditions and Symbols: Preparing for Baba Marta's arrival involves cleaning the home, and on the day of the holiday, people exchange "martenitsa," red and white thread accessories, which are hung on trees to mark the arrival of spring and warmth. Celebrating spring in Bulgaria is a time for gathering with family and friends and spending time with loved ones during the winter
Night of the Witches
Location: Catemco, Mexico
Holiday: Night of the Witches
Date: March 3
Status: Cultural holiday
Purpose: convention of practicing witches from Mexico and other countries

History of the festival: Mystical traditions in this part of Mexico go back centuries and have accumulated ancient beliefs and practices of local healers and sorcerers, medieval traditions of Spain, voodoo practices from West Africa, Catalan mysticism. The idea for the festival originated with a local shaman (brujo) in 1970. Since then, thousands of practicing witches and shamans from Mexico and neighboring countries come to Catemaco on the first weekend of each March. Similarly, people who want to get rid of illnesses, life problems and difficult situations through magic also come here.
The festival is an atmospheric one: amulets and magical potions in the streets, theatrical shows and mystical performances, the "lampia" cleansing ceremony, magicians and shamans, workshops on magic and much more

Traditions and Symbols: These days Katemaco has an atmospheric festival: amulets and magical potions in the streets, theatrical shows and mystical performances, a purification ceremony "lampia", performances of magicians and shamans, master classes in magic and much more
Location: India, Nepal
Holiday: Holi
Date: March 7
Status: Religious holiday, cultural holiday
Purpose: victory of good over evil, eternal love of god Radha Krishna

History of the festival: The Hindu festival of Holi has been celebrated since ancient times and there are many legends about its origin. One common version is the legend of King Hiranyakashipu. He demanded to be worshipped as a god and considered himself immortal. The king confronted his son Prahlad, who recognized the god Vishnu. For this, Hiranyakashipu and his sister Holika decided to kill Prahlad, but the god Vishna did not allow the injustice to happen

Traditions and Symbols: Lots of flowers and bright colors on the streets of the city! People shower each other and everything around them with colored powdered paint as a sign that all people are equal regardless of their caste, culture, or religion. In the evening festival participants burn bonfires to symbolize the victory of good over evil - the victory of the god Vishnu over Hiranyakashipu and Holika
Purim Street Party
Location: Tel Aviv, Israel
Holiday: Purim Street Party
Date: March 7
Status: National holiday, religious holiday
Purpose: Holiday in honor of the salvation of the Jewish people

History of the festival: Purim is one of the most important national holidays in Israel, commemorating the rescue of the Jewish people from Haman, an official who wanted to kill Jewish subjects in Persia. The Book of Esther (Book of Esther) says that this day should be a day of feasting and merriment, with people giving each other gifts and helping the poor

Traditions and Symbols: This traditional holiday is widely celebrated in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Residents of Tel Aviv throw a grandiose costume party in Kikar Hamedin Square. The festival is a bit like Halloween, you will meet people in various costumes, hats and masks. The traditional treat is triangular shaped pastries with various fillings, some say that such food symbolizes Amana's hat, others say ears. Either way, eating them symbolizes victory over evil
Location: Munich, Germany
Holiday: Starkbierzeit
Date: March 16
Status: Cultural holiday
Purpose: Spring Strong Beer Festival

History of the festival: According to legend, the festival appeared in 1627 was founded by monks. On the eve of Lent, the monks brewed a very strong and dense beer to withstand the next 40 days of abstinence in food. Initially only clergymen drank this beer, but since 1780 it was sold to ordinary people

Traditions and Symbols: The Starkbierzeit festival does not go without the traditional Salvator beer, but the guests are offered other strong beers as well. The focal points of the festival are the large breweries in Munich, such as Paulaner, Löwenbräu and Augustiner. There are tastings, concerts and lively parties. Participants dress up in traditional clothes, eat pretzels and other Bavarian snacks, and just have fun
St. Patrick's Day
Location: Ireland, USA, UK, Canada, Argentina, Australia, New ZealandHoliday: Starkbierzeit
Holiday: St. Patrick's Day
Date: March 17
Status: Cultural holiday, religious holiday, international holiday
Purpose: Celebration in honor of the patron who brought Christianity to Ireland

History of the festival: In 1631, the Catholic Church first recognized March 17 as a holiday about the patron saint of Ireland, St. Patrick. St. Patrick was a fifth-century Christian missionary and bishop. Patrick preached in Northern Ireland to convert pagans to Christianity, and after his death, many legends developed and he became the chief saint of Ireland. St. Patrick's Day began to spread in America after the immigration of the Irish in the 1800s, faced with repressive discrimination, the Irish united to honor their beloved patron with a parade every March 17. Over time, the tradition spread to the U.S. and other countries

Traditions and Symbols: St. Patrick's Day celebrations are primarily parades and processions, traditional musical performances, green colors and shamrocks. Traditionally, green dominates the holiday: in food, drink, clothing, decorations, even the Chicago River turns green. Green goes with everything! The shamrock is the day's gdawg symbol, but there are others, such as pots of gold and leprechauns. Everyone can be Irish and have a lot of fun on this fun noisy day!
Las Fallas
Location: Valencia, Spain
Holiday: Las Fallas
Date: March 15-19
Status: Cultural festival, part of the UNESCO List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity
Purpose: celebration of spring and fire, farewell to winter and negative emotions

History of the festival: The history of this holiday goes back to ancient traditions when carpenters used to burn wood junk, sawdust, unnecessary appliances on the eve of the feast of the patron saint San José. The tradition began to gain popularity, merged with the European tradition of burning effigies of winter and in the 18th century began to create figures for burning, and in the 20th century figures began to be made of papier-mache. These days, the figures for the ninots festival have become a true work of art and participants prepare for Las Fallas a year in advance. Ninots are three-dimensional, colorful compositions that depict various personages, scenes from cultural and political life. They are often humorous and satirical

Traditions and Symbols: At the opening of the festival there is a music parade, fireworks and pyrotechnic show in front of the Serranos Towers, illuminations appear in the streets and the city is illuminated with different colors. All the sculptures are set up in the square, presented to the audience and the voting for the best sculpture is opened. The next stage is the flower festival, the city is literally drowned in flowers. Women dress up in national dress and lay flowers at the image of the patron saint of Valencia - the Virgin Mary. The culmination of the festival is the Night of Fire (Nit del Foc) - the largest pyrotechnic show with a huge amount of fireworks, explosions and the main event "Crema" - the burning of figures. On this night, there is a burning of ninots all over the city, except for the sculpture that wins the vote. The artists' sculptures are burned, but the spectacle is so breathtaking and beautiful that no artist regrets the time spent. Along with this, things that people consider to bring bad luck are thrown into the flames, thus getting rid of everything negative. After the parade, people dance, sing, and have fun until morning. And the winning sculpture goes to the Las Fallas Museum and joins last year's winners
Spring Equinox
Location: Chichen Itza, Mexico
Holiday: Spring Equinox
Date: March 20
Status: Cultural holiday
Purpose: Change of seasons, start of a new cycle

History of the festival: The equinox is an astronomical event that occurs twice a year, once in spring and once in fall. At this time the tilt of the Earth in relation to the Sun is 0°, and because of this the length of day and night are almost equal on the day of the equinox. The ancient Maya studied for a long period the relationship between the stars and the different time periods, this pervaded and influenced their architecture. So in the Mayan capital of Chichen Itza the pyramid of the Temple of Kukulcan was built, on which throughout its existence every year at the same time the sun's rays hit exactly on the balustrade at the top of the pyramid. At this moment, the stone figurine with the image of the sacred snake casts a shadow in such a way that it seems that a real snake is crawling on the stone floor, which connects with the image of the head at the top. This performance is believed to be dedicated to the feathered serpent god Kukulkan, who bestowed health and good crops on his worshippers

Traditions and Symbols: On the day of the equinox thousands of tourists flock to Chichen Itza to watch the play of sun and shadows. During this event, Chichen Itza hosts theatrical performances and colorful ritual dances. Quetzalcoatl is the god of life and rebirth, so thousands of people from Mexico and elsewhere come to Chichen Itza to be blessed and recharged with positive emotions
Location: Bali, Indonesia
Holiday: Nyepi
Date: March 22-23
Status: National holiday
Purpose: The concluding ritual of the local Saka calendar New Year celebration

History of the festival: According to legend, Aji Saka introduced a new calendar from India and became the first Javanese king. The year in this calendar is 365 days, but the chronology is from 78 AD, for locals it is 1945, not 2023

Traditions and Symbols: Preparations for the feast begin three days in advance with the Melasti (Melasti) purification ceremony. At 6 a.m., hundreds of people in white robes carry important temple statues to the water, washing them, praying, and offering sacrifices. The Melasti ceremony ends at 6 pm.
The next ritual is Bhuta Yajna which aims to overcome the negative elements and establish balance with Nature, Mankind and God. During the day they prepare treats to feed the demons and prevent them from entering the dwelling, pray, burn incense, and in the evening there are carnivals with statues of demonic creatures Ogo-ogo, launching fireworks, the noise of pots and shouting. This is how the locals scare away the evil spirits.
And finally comes Nyepi, the day of silence. Beginning at 6 am for 24 hours, the island is plunged into silence. On this day, everyone stays home, no one talks, listens to music, lights up, or works. There are no cars or people on the streets! The residents do this to make the spirits believe that no one is on the island. Everything stops.
The next day, the island comes alive and lives its life, people go to visit and apologize for old mistakes
Cherry Blossom Season
Location: Kyoto, Japan
Holiday: Cherry Blossom Season
Date: March 18-25 floating date
Status: Cultural holiday
Purpose: welcome spring and warmth, awakening nature

History of the festival: The first observations of cherry blossoms date back to 812 C.E. Since then, this short-lived period, with the sakura blooming for only a few days, has become an important part of Japanese culture

Traditions and Symbols: The Japanese traditionally spend time under blossoming trees with friends and family in city parks, thus celebrating the arrival of spring. It is one of the most beautiful periods not only in Japanese cities, but also in the Instagram feed
Holiday Calendar: