OUTLOOK studied the brightest Pakistani holidays, because the saying goes for a reason: people live same way they hang out. An amazing game of history. Pakistan appeared on political map relatively short time ago yet one doesn’t have the heart to call it ‘young’ for it is inhabited with heirs of one of the most ancient civilization.
Nowadays it is second most populous Islamic country of about 190 million people with own traditions and customs living in it.
Many things have transformed in Pakistan over the years but ancient customs remained preserved till now. Numerically insignificant Dard people of Kalasha that mainly neighbor with Islamized population are still adherents of heathenism. Ordinary in terms of habits but wise when it comes to common life issues, these people are particularly zealous in protecting distinctive character of their culture. Kalasha’s love to dances and music fostered numerous holidays. The most remarkable of them is Joshi. It is celebrated on May 14 and 15 and marks incoming of spring. Houses are decorated with flowers in these days, men put on new clothes and women – also bright and heavy accessories. During the festival it is customary to milk cattle and exchange dairy products with neighbors and friends after that. In the evening the whole tribe heads to hill slopes to continue celebration.
Heathen holidays are in perfect accord with modern ones, in particular, Shandur Polo Festival. The tournament has been held in the first week of July since 1936. Traditionally, two teams from Chirtal and Gilgit valleys participate in it. Long trade rows and campings emerge on the banks of Shandur Lake for the period of the festival. Vendors insistently offer tourist to buy all kinds of goods hoping to profit from reach foreigners. It is rather hard to get to Shandur – two-day-long trip in mountains along lacet isn’t everybody’s cup of tea; however marvelous views and exciting polo game will become a reward that’s worth it.
We have already mentioned that almost entire population of Pakistan profess Islam. No wonder that religious holidays are particularly revered here. One of them, Eid al-Adha or Kurban Bayram, is celebrated to commemorate sacrifice of prophet Ibrahim. In order to make everything in time, preparations for it start well in advance: goats are bought, gorgeous bells are put on them, goats are decorated with ribbons, fed abundantly and let to have enough of walk. When Eid al-Adha arrives, they are sacrificed. At that it is done everywhere: on walkways, in squares, yards and parks. Men with huge knives run around in blood-stained aprons, corpses hang on trees and animal screams are heard from all sides.
It goes on like that for the whole day long and in the evening streets get filled with luring smells of roast meat. Pakistanis put on their best clothes and whole families gather for a meal. The festival lasts three days – golden times for needy and beggars that come from far and wide. Local poor folk know that in Eid al-Adha it is customary to serve food to those who cannot afford it themselves. Tents are set in front of rich houses where they can count on viands.
Eid al-Adha in the mosque of SunehrionSaddarroadin Peshawar
Another Islamic festival – Eid al-Fitr that honors the end of Ramadan – is celebrated on especially noble scale. During last couple of days of the sacred month Pakistanis set on a trip around shops looking for presents for close ones, products for festive table and for new clothes. Cakes enjoy particular popularity – demand on them goes through the roof with long queues gathering outside confectionaries. Decorated with shiny bright-green, yellow and blue bracelets, domes and frescoes from mosques, Eid al-Fitr cakes rather resemble works of art then food. On the eve of the event Pakistan turns into a huge anthill where everyone is engaged in one’s own business. Light decorations are being installed in the streets and tables are set out for the evening’s first meal after fast – festive fuss reigns everywhere.
Should you happen to be in Pakistan in late February or early March, we advise you not to miss Sindh National Horses&Cattle Show. It is traditionally held in Fortress Stadium trade centre in the country’s second largest city Lahore. Aside from participants of the exhibition, locals and numerous tourists come here in order to have a look at this parade of animals. Highlight of the show is dances on horses and camels, vaudeville with participation of stunt actors and performance by military orchestra.
And to conclude with, here are a couple of words about spring holiday of Holi. Although it is believed to be Indian national holiday, it is among favorite ones in Pakistan as well. Also known as the festival of colors, it symbolizes the end of winter and nature’s awakening from sleep. Streets turn into multicolored spots for two days. It may seem to a western person who happened to be in Pakistan during Holi like some kind of carnival: bright columns of people that move to the sounds of drums and carols, strewing each other with colored powder are quite impressive. The celebration is so colorful and exciting that it was adopted by European countries. In spring of 2013 Holi was first held in Kiev.
The free fight has not feminine face. The good girl could smile in a pretty way and care colorful dress but not strike out wildly. But in the fierce Ands such gentle flowers do not grow. The true Bolivian cholit will be quick on the uptake, and it is able to fill in if necessary. But on Sunday, having gathered the starched skirts, she will desperately go to fight
Ice cream with a taste of horse meat, pickled insects, fish with deadly venom, etc – Japanese cuisine has things to surprise, amaze and shock you with. And truth be told, enumeration of these dishes doesn’t help my appetite at all. But we are not after exotic stuff. True culinary tourism is an attempt to comprehend mindset and feel national distinctive color through traditional cuisine – not try most exotic dishes. Parts of people’s souls, its history and culture are actually concentrated in national dainties.
Yesterday I created a Universe. I took some peas, rice, buckwheat, millet, black and white pepper seeds and cardamom. Grabbed a handful of coffee and aniseeds. Then it all acquired a centre. It kept growing and calming my thoughts. When the last seed landed in the circle, I felt forgotten harmony again, heard birds singing through the noise of cars on the avenue, sensed fragrance of violets that a neighbor of mine was growing on her balcony and a recollection of Funtik from floor 5 and his tail evoked a flush of tenderness towards the shaggy monster.
The Embassy of Uzbekistan in Ukraine and Ambassador's Spouses Club Kiev welcomed the Ukrainian public and foreign guests with the national art of the Uzbek people, traditions and principles of creating pieces of art made by the folk artists and artists from Uzbekistan.
Only dancing and wearing mask, Korean peasants were able to express their disgust towards rudeness or greed of the hosts or apply to some deity with extraordinary request. Keeping anonymity, the people played out the scenes from life, cried, and laughed. At the end of the performance the destiny awarded the good characters and punished villains.
Three years ago Austrian tour operatorslaunched an unusual touristic tourdesigned for fansof singing style called yodel. Hikers wander through the Ziller Valley, a broad trail narrows opening the way for only the most avid travellers, then track leads upwards. Tourists look into the interactive station shaped as a giantsonorous walk-in cowbell, then they go around thelargest alpine horn and head to place where Alpine herdsmen used to have unhurried musical conversations with their flocks.
Small ethnic groupshave been always interesting for scientists and artists, who sought inspiration in their lifestyle. The Bajau Sea Gypsies who formally can be correlated with Malaysia, are one of the most popular ethnic groups today.
On Valentine's Day, OUTLOOK shares kissing facts and smooching statistics you never knew, but really should! And icing on the holiday cake will be three star places where few people would resist uttering "Kiss me!"
In Kyiv on the 5-th of February Culture Days of Kuwait started. They are dedicated to the 25-th anniversary of diplomatic relations between our countries. All the events will go under the support of the Embassy of Kuwait to Ukraine and personally Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Mr Rashid Hammad Al Advani.
When you first hear about them, you do not believe your ears; when you first see them, you do not believe your eyes. Their passports have no photos, they do not pay taxes, do not do military service, they wear plain clothing, drive horse-drawn buggies, insulate themselves from modern conveniences, and, of course, have the most delicious food in the USA. Would you like to learn more?
Christmas arrives with a warm overjacket on its shoulders. At night it brings warm light of the first evening star and in the morning it wakes you up with shine of white but warm sun. If my great-grandmonther’s grandmother had been asked about her Christmas feelings, I believe, her words would have been identical to mine. Because together with a bowl of kutia, generations of Ukrainians transfer their traditions from hand to hand.
Till the beginning of 2018 there is little time that’s why in case one hasn’t decided yet where and how to celebrate the most popular holiday on our planet, Outlook offers the list of the brightest cities for the celebration. There all the wishes and dreams will, definitely, come true!
A little son came to his father and suggested to run away from mom and granny to the North Pole? Now, do not indulge into tragic speeches of severe frosts, pitch darkness of the polar night and hungry polar bears! Give a conspiracy wink to a little brave one, and give him a real man's job for his school winter holidays that is to learn how to build an igloo, night shelter in ever-frost lands.
Hebron is well known for being the city of 3 [three] religions and 3 [three] civilizations, a real place of power. Perhaps that is why by twist of fate there emerged glass which looks fragile, but is centuries old, the same as Hebron.
Christmas is one of the most beautiful and favourite holidays in Erope and they get ready for it well in advance and thoroughly! Christmas fairs filled with bright fairy lights, New Year toys and shiny tinsels create festive atmosphere of solemnity. Photographer Roman Matkov was lucky to get an eyeful of all this impressive beauty and today he shares pre-holiday mood with readers of OUTLOOK through a selection of photos!
This beverage became so deeply ingrained in the life of humans that we sometimes even fail to notice putting a kettle on a stove. There are thousands ways of best-loved beverage brewing in the world. OUTLOOK offers the best of them to your attention.
The Embassy of Federative Republic Germany to Ukraine on the 10-th of November will be arranging the current Germany Weeks in Ukraine. They intend to carry out nearly 70 events in 14 cities of Ukraine.
There’s hardly anything that compares to bright-starred sky and silence. It is the stars that OUTLOOK want to tell you about or more precisely about the places with the best view on them. In Europe it is recommended to go stargazing not to some place but to… Slovenia. Point is, this small country is one of the cleanest in the world and consequently isn’t that polluted with smog.
When Bahriddin’s mother was getting ready for work, she was assiduously arranging her hair around her tubeteika. It resulted in some sort of a crown. On holidays she plaited special adornments into her black hair with a tinge of blue. When she walked, they were tinkling slightly to create an aura of a dance. And in evenings little Bahriddin couldn’t fall asleep without holding her tight braid in his hands. Even now he recalls her long hair adoringly and believes them to be essential element of female beauty.
We are infinitely grateful to all of you - our guests - for sharing this holiday with us! We express special gratitude to all embassies-participants, diasporas, artists, craftsmen, volunteers. Without you, this holiday would not be so bright and memorable. Today we offer you a colorful video that will take you back to the atmosphere of our unforgettable holiday.