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Press releases

20 Dec 2016

Christmas and New Year in Belarus

New Year lights near Minsk ArenaNew Year lights near Minsk Arena

Christmas and New Year are a wonderful opportunity to travel around Belarus and get immersed in the magic of winter holidays at hospitable ecotourism centers and farmsteads, health centers, ski resorts, and the estate of the Belarusian Father Frost. The holidays are also a perfect time to visit the most popular tourist attractions, take part in folk rituals, and, of course, taste dishes of the national cuisine.

The 2017 New Year holidays in Belarus will offer an eventful program with festive street processions of fairy-tale characters, open-air theatrical performances and 3D shows, Christmas fairs and sales, presentations of old customs and rituals at ethnographic museums, concerts of classical music and balls at magnificent palaces and castles, and also exciting New Year excursions and guided tours.

The most spectacular events will start right before the main holiday of the year. Thousands of people around Belarus will gather to enjoy concerts and fireworks. Minsk will celebrate the first night of the New Year with the concert Happy New Year, Minsk! The show will run from 11 p.m. on 31 December to 4 a.m. on 1 January. The fireworks will light up the sky over the Palace of Sports in the Belarusian capital on 1.30 a.m. on 1 January.

Read advice on how to plan the holidays in Belarus, what places to visit, what to see and, most importantly, where to celebrate New Year's Eve in our preview of Christmas and New Year celebrations.

New Year 2017: 10 options that are possible in Belarus only

Street processions and performances

Street shows and theatrical processions will gather hundreds of Snow Maidens and Fathers Frost, fairy-tale and cartoon characters in the main streets of Belarusian cities and towns. Residents and visitors of Minsk will be invited to sing together with the Father Frost at the Minsk Town Hall.

Procession and competition of New Year cars

Procession and competition of New Year cars in Polotsk

23 December 
Palace of Culture, Polotsk 

Festive procession of Fathers Frost and Snow Maidens in Minsk

24 December
Independence Avenue (Prospect Nezavisimosti), Svobody Square, Minsk
Festive procession of Fathers Frost and Snow Maidens in Minsk
New Year show

New Year show The Magical Country Where Wishes Come True

24 December – 5 January 
Upper Town, Minsk  

Visiting Father Frost

24 December – 5 January
Liberty Square, Minsk 
Visiting Father Frost

Christmas exhibitions, performances and children's shows

On the New Year's Eve 2017 you can travel through space and time, celebrate winter in line with the Belarusian traditions, attend the 19th century balls, see exclusive Christmas decorations that are dozens or even hundreds of years old.

Exhibition “Time of Miracles. Winter Holidays and Fun”

Exhibition “Time of Miracles. Winter Holidays and Fun”

11 November 2016 – 28 February 2017
 Belarus National History Museum, Minsk 
More

Museum of Christmas Tree Decorations in Minsk

December 10 – January 31, 2017 
Belarus National History Museum, Minsk 
More 
Museum of Christmas Tree Decorations in Minsk
Mystery of Magic Box in Belarusian circus

Mystery of Magic Box in Belarusian circus

17 December 2016 – 15 January 2017 
Belarusian State Circus, Minsk    
More

Christmas children’s parties in the Palace of the Republic

20 December 2016 – 6 January 2017 
Palace of the Republic, Minsk
More
Christmas children’s parties in the Palace of the Republic

Concerts and Shows

The Christmas program 2017 features the best opera arias from the stars of the Bolshoi Theater of Belarus, an incendiary jazz show by the legendary saxophonist Detroit Gary Wiggins, masterpieces of world classics performed by the Minsk Klassik Chamber Ensemble and the State Academic Symphony Orchestra of the Republic of Belarus, and also the soundtracks to Hollywood films of the 20th century.

Big Christmas concert in Minsk

Big Christmas concert in Minsk

24 December, 20.00
Upper Town concert hall, Minsk

New Year's Eve at the Bolshoi Theater of Belarus

29, 30 and 31 January, 19.00 
Bolshoi Theater of Belarus, Minsk 
New Year's Eve at the Bolshoi Theater of Belarus
Hollywood-styled New Year in musical theater

Hollywood-styled New Year in musical theater

31 December, 18.00 
Belarusian Academic Musical Theater, Minsk

New Year at Belarusian Philharmonic

31 December, 18.00
Belarusian State Philharmonic Society, Minsk
New Year at Belarusian Philharmonic
Jazz New Year at Palace of Republic

Jazz New Year at Palace of Republic

31 December, 23.00
Evgeny Vladimirov Jazz Club, Minsk

Christmas and New Year Balls

At the very beginning of 2017 Belarus’ main architectural landmarks invite to enjoy the atmosphere of aristocratic balls of the 19th century. The program will include master classes, traditional ball games and, of course, popular dances of the Romantic period:  polonaise, waltz, quadrille and mazurka…

Potemkin New Year Trees in Krichev Palace

Potemkin New Year Trees in Krichev Palace

December 2016  
Potemkin Palace, Krichev, Mogilev Oblast 

Children’s Christmas Balls in Mir Castle

2 – 7 January  
 Mir Castle, Grodno Oblast
Children’s Christmas Balls in Mir Castle
Mir Castle

Mir Ball

7 January
Portrait Hall, Mir Castle, Grodno Oblast 

New Year Celebrations at the Radziwills’

2–8 January, 3 January – Nesvizh Castle Secrets quest
Nesvizh Castle, Minsk Oblast 
New Year Celebrations at the Radziwills’
New Year’s Ball in Bolshoi Theater

New Year’s Ball in Bolshoi Theater

at 21.00, 13 January
Bolshoi Theater of Belarus, Minsk

Visiting Father Frost

Everyone wrote letters to Father Frost when a child. The Belarusian Father Frost gets more than 10,000 letters a year. This year his residence in Belovezhskaya Pushcha was visited by 77,000 guests from different countries. During the New Year and Christmas celebrations in Belarus, one can also meet other fairytale characters, such as Grandfather Zimnik, Lady Zavirukha, Bolotnik…

Father Frost’s Residence

Trip to Father Frost’s Residence

 10 December 2016 – January 2017

Father Frost’s Residence, Belovezhskaya Pushcha         

The New Year’s train from Minsk to Father Frost’s Residence in Belovezhskaya Pushcha was launched on 16 December 2016.

Estate of Grandfather Zimnik and Lady Blizzard in Naliboki Pushcha

from 10 December 
village of Zaleiki, Grodno Oblast
Estate of Grandfather Zimnik and Lady Blizzard in Naliboki Pushcha
Park and museum of interactive history Sula

Excursion program Christmas Adventures in the Village of Sula

14 December – 10 January
Park and museum of interactive history Sula, the village of Sula, Stolbtsy District, Minsk Oblast

New Year tour Christmas at Zyuzya Estate

from 16 December
agrotourism complex Korobchitsy, Grodno Oblast
New Year tour Christmas at Zyuzya Estate
Estate of Grandfather Frost of Berestye

Estate of Grandfather Frost of Berestye

18 December – 8 January
Brest park of culture and recreation (3 Lenina Street), Brest

New Year bus tours in Minsk

23 December – 3 January 
Minsk railway station
More
New Year bus tours in Minsk
Estate of Grandfather Frost at Stalin Line

Estate of Grandfather Frost at Stalin Line

24 December 2016 – 14 January 2017
 History and culture complex Stalin Line, Minsk District

New Year quest at Grandfather Frost’s estate in Polotsk

26 December– 8 January 
Grandfather Frost’s estate, 1A Vologina Street, Polotsk, Vitebsk Oblast
New Year quest at Grandfather Frost’s estate in Polotsk

Christmas fairs in Minsk

Christmas fairs are the best option for those who like unique handmade souvenirs with original design.

Christmas Fair in Minsk

Christmas Fair in Minsk

15 December – 15 January 
October Square and territory near the Sports Palace, Minsk

Kolyady Star fair in Sport Palace

24 December 
Sport Palace, Minsk
Kolyady Star fair
Fair in Minsk’s downtown as part of the New Year performance Magical Country Where Wishes Come True

Fair in Minsk’s downtown as part of the New Year performance Magical Country Where Wishes Come True

24 December – 5 January  
Minsk’s downtown

Kava Kakava fair

24 – 25 December 
 President Hotel, Minsk
Kava Kakava fair
Large fashion market in Minsk

Large fashion market in Minsk

29 – 30 December
The shopping center Metropol, Minsk

Belarusian winter rites

Belarusian traditions and customs, which are closely connected with the folk calendar, are now treated as part of historical and cultural legacy. They are closely studied and restored in various parts of the country, including in ethnographic museums. We invite fans of the old Belarus to see for themselves the most interesting and important winter rites

Folk rite Kolyady

Folk rite Kolyady

24 December  
Belarusian State Folk Architecture and Rural Lifestyle Museum, the village of Ozertso, Minsk Oblast

Folk game Tereshka’s Wedding

25 December – 7 January
The village of Anoshki, Lepel District, Vitebsk Oblast
Folk game Tereshka’s Wedding
Folk rite Kolyady (Christmas) Tsars in the village of Semezhevo

Folk rite Kolyady (Christmas) Tsars in the village of Semezhevo, a unique event on UNESCO’s World Heritage List

13 – 14 January 
The village of Semezhevo, Kopyl District, Minsk Oblast
More

Folk ritual Pull the Kolyada Up the Oak

21 January
The village of Noviny, Berezino District, Minsk Oblast
Folk ritual Pull the Kolyada Up the Oak


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