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Within this week several Asian countries are celebrating their New Year. The celebrating countries Bangladesh, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Nepal and parts of India (West Bengal, Assam and Tripura), which use different Calendars, also have their very own traditions to enter the New Year.
Even so, that the fireworks, that western countries are used to, originate in Asia and are very old already, many eastern countries take up their celebrations in very different ways.

Bangladesh, which is using the traditional Bengali Solar Calendar, is going to enter the year 1416. Their Bengali Calendar is 593 / 594 years less than the date in the Gregorian Calendar, which is used in most parts of the world like Europe and USA.

Laos and Thailand celebrate the beginning of their year 2552, according to their Theravada Buddhist lunisolar Calendar. This Buddhist Calendar is based on the original Surya Siddhanta Hindu Calendar originating in the 3rd century.

Cambodia, on the other hand, is one year ahead of their time and will now celebrate the coming of the year 2553, using the same Buddhist Calendar, but following their very own traditions in these multi colorful celebrations all over the country.

The celebrating people group together in the streets of Nepal, covered in vermilion powder and dance at the “Bisket Jatra” festival to welcome the new Nepal year, to wish health, happiness and long life to each other.

While in western traditions the celebrations are accompanied by fireworks, parties and other noisy events, celebrates Myanmar their “water-splashing” festivals, which is not so noisy, but certainly wet. Happy New Year, in Myanmar it will be the year 1371.

Different Asian countries, different traditions, even different years, but they have one thing in common, they all celebrate – Happy New Year!

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