Hıdırellez Date in the current year: May 6, 2018

Hıdırellez Hıdırellez (Hıdrellez) is a traditional spring festival celebrated in Turkey on May 6. It marks the day on which Prophets Al-Khidr (Hizir) and Elijah (Ilyas) met on the earth. The word “Hıdırellez” is a fusion of the prophets' names.

There are numerous theories about the origin of the festival. It is probably related to pagan rituals and ceremonies that honored the arrival of spring. Eventually it became associated the meeting of Hizir and Illyas which was accepted as the arrival of spring.

Nowadays, Hıdırellez is celebrated mainly in small towns and villages rather than large cities. Before the feast, people clean their houses and decorate them with flowers and garments because they believe that Hizir is going to visit them on the feast day.

Hıdırellez celebrations typically include picnics in the countryside held by the water (streams, rivers, lakes or other water springs). This tradition is related to a widespread belief that suggests that Hizir has drunk the water of life which has helped him become immortal. On the occasion, people cook special meals such as lamb meat.

One more ritual associated with the holiday is jumping over the fire. Hıdırellez fires are believed to protect from all illnesses or diseases.

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