A row festivals and holidays are held annually in Tajikistan, which attract not only local residents, but also a large number of foreign guests. Each festival is unique and gives a concentrated view of the culture, traditions and history of the area where the festival is held.
Disclaimer: The following calendar is based on information received from organizers of events, local tourism boards and other sources. Changes and cancellations may occur with no prior notice due to any reasons. It is strongly advised to check dates and location before finalizing your travel plan.
August 19-21, 2022 | Roof of the World
Roof of the World is an annual music festival in Khorog, which gathers thousands of ethnic music lovers not only from all over Tajikistan, but also from near and far abroad. This festival is held once a year in the Pamirs, that is, in the region where the mountains touch the sky and the stars descend to the earth. This place was not chosen by chance, because music is an integral part of the inhabitants of the Pamirs and accompanies them everywhere. It is very difficult to find a person here who would not be able to sing and dance, play musical instruments.
Every year, musicians from Afghanistan, Germany, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, the USA, and Uzbekistan present their art at the festival. Participants get the opportunity to exchange cultural traditions and immerse themselves in the musical culture of other nations.
The guests of the festival, in addition to musical performances, are waiting for master classes from musicians, as well as showings of documentaries about the traditions and culture of different peoples.
Location: Khorog, Organizer contacts: https://www.facebook.com/ROTWF/
At-Chabysh Horse Festival / Pamir Nomad’s Festival | Second week of August Exact Date TBD
The close friendship between Central Asian horsemen and their steeds has long been legendary, and this is especially true of Kyrgyzstan, where nomads have become so familiar with horses that their children begin to ride before they walk. Therefore, equestrian competitions have always been one of the most important parts of the culture of the Kyrgyz as an opportunity to share the secrets of riding between generations and an incentive for young riders to master this delicate craft.
The inhabitants of these charming landscapes, which have remained unchanged over the past centuries, willy-nilly have to adapt to the changes taking place in the world. The traditional international festival "At Chabysh" was created to revive interest in the Kyrgyz horse - a symbol of the history, culture and heritage of the people, as well as to revive the economy of this region.
Summer Fest / Food and Balloon Festival | September Exact Date TBD
The festival of national cuisines and balloons in Dushanbe is already a traditional holiday. Every year it gathers more than forty thousand guests. For two days, Tajik people are delighted with new and elegant, as well as favorite traditional dishes, which are very popular both among local gourmets and among guests of sunny and hospitable Tajikistan. All exhibited culinary masterpieces are seasoned with performances by stars, master classes and tastings. The big stadium is decorated with fragrant pastries, shish kebabs and dozens of dishes, the names of which are not only easy to remember, but also difficult to pronounce. But everything is very tasty.
Along with the masters of Tajik cuisine, employees of foreign diplomatic missions accredited in the Republic of Tajikistan present their national dishes at this festival. For example, the British Ambassador personally invites guests to the pavilion reserved for his country. They have the national flag on their sweets. But the US Embassy treats all guests with its apple pie. Samsa from vegetables and meat, chicken biryani with rice and chicken "tikka" are prepared by Indian chefs.
The peculiarity of the festival is that all dishes are prepared in the presence of spectators. You can also participate in the process together with the chef.
For those who follow the physical form, the organizers provide the opportunity to go in for sports. And for children there are classes in modeling, drawing, beadwork and trampoline jumping. But the highlight of the holiday, of course, is the Balloon Festival.
Pilaf Festival | October Exact Date TBD
This festival is held in Dushanbe and is considered the most delicious and satisfying. More than ten tons of pilaf in 400 cauldrons, as well as a ton of pilaf in the largest cauldron were cooked this year.
Chefs for the festival usually start preparing from midnight. Cauldrons are installed in the park of culture and recreation from twelve o'clock at night. While the residents of the capital are sleeping, fires are burning in the park, cooks are preparing preparations, and then proceed to the direct preparation of pilaf. The park opens its doors at seven in the morning. Usually chefs from all over the country come to the festival. For them, this is their moment of glory. After all, residents and guests choose the best oshpaz (so-called cooks who specialize in cooking pilaf).
Pilaf lovers are waiting for various competitions, the most interesting of which is “the best eater”. There are no restrictions, everyone participates. The main condition is to eat a large plate of pilaf in seven minutes. Various gifts await the winners. The festival is held annually in autumn.
Tajikistan is a land of sky-high heights, delicious food, centuries-old history and rich culture. If you want to learn more about the sunny country, be sure to visit the four major festivals.