Holidays in Russian

Привет! Как дела? (Privet! Kak dila?) Welcome to the Rocket Russian lesson on Holidays in Russian.

Russia has many праздники (prazdniki) celebrated throughout the year. But the most favorite and probably most important is Новый Год (Novyi Got) – New Year. It's celebrated on the evening of 31 December. At this time, family and friends gather around the table to see off the old year and greet the new year. The coming of the new year is marked by the Kremlin Clock (Kuranty) striking twelve. It is a tradition to have a decorated ëлка (yolka) (spruce tree) at home and to give each other presents. It is also a tradition to come into a new year without any debts, with an abundance of food on the table and wearing your best clothes – which symbolizes that the good wealth is carried over to the next year. Russians generally take the week off between New Year and Russian Orthodox Christmas, celebrated on 7 January.

Today we’ll go over this and several other holidays that you might find just as important as the people in Russia do.

Resources for further reading:

Pronouncing holidays in Russian

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holidays, celebrations



spruce tree

Новый Год

Novyi got

New Year




День рождения

Den’ razhdenia


Первое апреля

Pervae aprelia

April Fool's Day




День Защитника Отечества

Den’ zashcheetnika Аtechistva

Defender of the Fatherland Day (23 February)

It is a very popular informal holiday to celebrate men. It is celebrated both by families at home and by colleagues at work.

Восьмое Марта

Vas’moe Marta

8 March (International Woman's Day)

International Woman’s Day is a public holiday and is about celebrating women.

День Матери

Den’ materi

Mother's Day

Первое Мая

Pervae Maia

1 May (Labour Day)

День Победы

Den’ pabedy

Victory Day (9 May)

День Независимости России

Den’ nizaveesimasti rassii

Independence Day of Russia (12 June)

День всех влюблëнных

Den’ vseh vliublyonnyh

Valentine's Day

That’s it for this lesson on holidays in Russian. I hope you learned a lot! To practice these new words, try marking your calendar with the holidays and important days in your life in Russian. You’ll start to remember them automatically after some practice!

Here are a few recommended Russian lessons to try next!

До скорого! (da skorava)

Natalya Dubrov: Rocket Russian

Make It Stick With Rocket Reinforcement

Reinforce your learning from this lesson with the Rocket Reinforcement activities!