In Mongolia, the first celebration of the year is the Lunar New Year, Tsagaan Sar, meaning “white moon”. The date of the celebrations is determined according to lunar calendar. Tsagaan Sar is a great family celebration with many ceremonies and lasts for three days. The two main aspects of the festival are the copious amounts of traditional food, most notably buuz (steamed dumplings), and visiting relatives and friends. Tsagaan Sar traditions are several centuries old and Mongolians really respect them. It is one of the two festivals when people wear traditional clothes – the other, is the summer festival of Naadam, which always takes place in July. However, not every Mongolian celebrates Tsagaan Sar.
According to national statistics, 64 percent of Mongolian households celebrate Tsagaan Sar and one household spends on average MNT 1.5 million.
Tsagaan Sar follows the Tibetan Buddhist calendar, which normally corresponds to the Chinese New Year. As less than a month remains, preparations will soon be underway.