Mauritius use to have 25 national holidays to cater for the different ethnic groups in Mauritius now reduced to 16 as seen below.
Mauritius is a cultural melting pot of Africans, Chinese, French, Hindus and Muslims. The ministry of information make sure to communicate on national television providing the cultural background of every national holiday. This form of communication provides other ethnic groups who do not actually celebrate more aware and tolerant to other religions in Mauritius.
The festivals listed below are not celebrated at the same date every year. Therefore, only the months when they are likely to be celebrated is given.
The Spring Festival, which is the Chinese New Year, is celebrated in January/February, depending on the adjustment of lunar days. Red, symbol of happiness, is the dominant colour. Food is piled up to ensure abundance during the year and the traditional wax cake is distributed to relatives and friends. Firecrackers are lit to ward off evil spirits.
Cavadee is celebrated in January/February, more precisely by the Tamil community in Mauritius. Along with the fire-walking and sword-climbing ceremonies, Cavadee is among the most spectacular Tamil events. The body pierced with needles and the tongue and cheeks with skewers, the devotee, trance-like and in penance, walks in procession to the temple bearing the "Cavadee", a wooden arch covered with flowers with a pot of milk at each end of its base which he or she places before the deity.
Maha Shivaratree is celebrated in honour of Hindu god Siva (February). Hindu devotees, clad in spotless white, carry the "kanwar" - wooden arches covered with flowers – on pilgrimage to Grand Bassin, to fetch holy water from the lake. The whole scene is reminiscent of the great rituals on the banks of the Holy Ganges in India.
Ugadi is the Telugu New Year.
Chariot festival is any public procession in a chariot.
The 15 August becomes a public holiday in even years, for example 2006, 2008 and 2010. During odd years (2005, 2007, 2009), it is not a public holiday; instead, 1 November will be a public holiday, in commemoration of All Saints' Day . The decision to alternate between the two dates was a government decision to avoid increasing the number of unworked days after abolition of slavery (1 February) and Arrival of Indentured Labourers (2 November) were declared public holidays in the early 2000s.
Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated by the Marathi community in Mauritius on the 4th day of the lunar month of the Hindu calendar. It marks the birthday of Ganesha , the God of wisdom and remover of all obstacles according to Hindu mythology.
Diwali is the most jovial of all Hindu festivals. Celebrated in October/November it marks the victory of righteousness over evil in the Hindu mythology. Traditionally, clay oil lamps were placed in front of every home turning the island into a fairyland of flickering lights; these have now been replaced mostly by decorative electric lights.
The exact date of this festival is subject to confirmation as its celebration depends on the visibility of the moon. Eid-ul-Fitr is celebrated to mark the end of Ramadan , the Muslim holy month of fasting. It is a day of thanksgiving and rejoicing for Muslims. Special prayers are offered at mosques during that morning.
Who is off on 2 January 2019?
|Tuesday||January 01||New Year's Day|
|Wednesday||January 02||Day after New Years Day||See to the right other countries who are off|
|Monday||January 21||Thaipoosam Cavadee||Hindu festival|
|Friday||February 01||Abolition of Slavery|
|Tuesday||February 05||Chinese Spring Festival||1st day of 1st lunar month|
|Monday||March 04||Maha Shivaratree|
|Tuesday||March 12||National Day|
|Sunday||April 14||Tamizh Puttaandu||Tamil New Year. Not a public holiday in 2019|
|Wednesday||May 01||Labour Day|
|Wednesday||June 05||Eid-Ul-Fitr||End of Ramadan|
|Thursday||August 15||Assumption Day||Assumption of Mary ( This year: Every other year)|
|Monday||September 02||Ganesh Chaturthi|
|Friday||October 27||Diwali||The Festival of Lights (Hindu)|
|Saturday||November 02||Arrival of Indentured|
|Wednesday||December 25||Christmas Day|
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