Happy New Year In Turkish: 6 Awesome Phrases

I’m one of those people who long for the snowy weather, dressing up in layers, and drinking hot chocolate. Speaking of which, the new year, 2023, is knocking on the door, and I can’t believe how time flies!

Even some people out there may have already started planning their New Year holidays or Christmas. If it looks like you’ll enter the new year in Turkey, you are in the right place to learn Turkish!

Because in this blog post, you’ll learn everything you need to know (from new year customs to phrases to wishing happy new year in Turkish) to experience a great New Year’s Day in Turkey.

Page Contents:


How Do Turkish People Celebrate The New Year?

baked turkey dinner for new year

As in most countries, Turkey enters the new year after midnight on December 31st. On the evening of December 31st (31 Aralık), most people gather with their friends and family to celebrate the new year.

Most families have a decorated-pine tree in their homes for the new year, if not for Christmas. A typical Turkish family hosts a grand dinner with a delicious Turkish menu and invites relatives to strengthen the bonds in between. After dinner, they play board games such as Bingo (tombala) and watch New Year’s shows on TV.

Meanwhile, other people prefer going out with their friends partying and drinking in a club, or attending the massive parade with thousands of people in Taksim, İstanbul, to celebrate the new year.

People turn their lights off and set off their firecrackers, counting down to ten until 12:00 AM. Once the clock strikes midnight, fireworks lighten the dark sky, and people start screaming happy new year (mutlu yıllar). Then, they exchange new year’s gifts with greeting cards.

Although most people celebrate New Year’s Day with the activities mentioned above, some Turkish people prefer not to celebrate it since they consider it a Western tradition that has nothing to do with Turkish culture.


Is Christmas Celebrated In Turkey?

Christmas and Santa Claus

Since it is a Muslim-majority country, Christmas isn’t officially celebrated in Turkey, and there is no big hype for December 25th (25 Aralık). Moreover, it isn’t an official holiday.

Today, Christians make up only 0.3% of the Turkish population. However, churches in different parts of Turkey host Christmas ceremonies for Christian people.

Cities have decorations and light displays, and some cafes and stores are decorated with a Christmas theme to celebrate New Year’s Eve, which is the actual celebration instead of Christmas.

As a result, you don’t really hear Turkish people say Merry Christmas in Turkish, which is Mutlu Noeller.


6 Ways To Say Happy New Year In Turkish

Here are the six most common Turkish phrases to wish someone a happy new year in Turkish.

1. Mutlu Yıllar

Mutlu yıllar is the most common way of saying happy new year in Turkish. It means ”happy years” when literally translated to English. It expresses the wishes for the upcoming year to bring happiness.

2. İyi Seneler

It is another common phrase for happy new year. It literally means ”good years” when directly translated to English. It expresses the hope for a better year.

3. Yeni Yılınız Kutlu Olsun

It is a more formal phrase than the previous ones. Yeni yılınız kutlu olsun means ”may your new year be happy” in English. You can say it to acquaintances that you are not very close to in daily life.

If you want to make it sound informal, you can say yeni yılın kutlu olsun, so just omit the ‘-ız’ honorific suffix.

4. Birlikte Nice Mutlu Yıllara

It means ”to many more happy years together” in English. Usually, family members and couples say this to each other, indicating they want to spend more beautiful years with you.

5. Nice Sağlık, Mutluluk, Sevgi Dolu Yıllara

Its English translation would be ”to many more years full of health, happiness, and love”. This is my favorite phrase to wish a happy new year because it shows all the best and sincere wishes from one’s heart.

6. Mutlu Noeller

Mutlu Noeller means Merry Christmas in Turkish. As I mentioned before, Turkish people don’t really celebrate Christmas, but just in case, you need to say this phrase.


New Year Related Turkish Vocabulary

Greeting cardTebrik kartı
MidnightGece yarısı
New Year’s EveYılbaşı arifesi
New Year’s DayYılbaşı
New Year’s HolidayYılbaşı tatili
FireworksHavai fişek
To toastKadeh kaldırmak
To danceDans etmek
To inviteDavet etmek
CountdownGeri sayım
ParadeGeçit töreni
Santa ClauseNoel baba


New Year’s Resolutions In Turkish

new year resolutions

Honestly, my favorite part of the new year is making resolutions. We have many things to do and achieve as individuals, but during the mad rush of daily life, we tend to forget about them.

New Year is the perfect time to think deeply about what kind of person we want to become and what kind of life we want to have in the future. It’s a time to reset our bad habits and gain new, better habits.

I love to get my journal and write down my intentions for the new year, hoping I’ll finally achieve them (which I never do). So, let’s look at some of the most common new year’s resolutions in Turkish.

Lose weight.Kilo ver.
Quit smoking.Sigara içmeyi bırak.
Quit drinking.Alkol içmeyi bırak.
Study regularly.Düzenli ders çalış.
Do exercise regularly.Düzenli egzersiz yap.
Read more books.Daha çok kitap oku.
Spend more time with your family.Ailenle daha çok zaman geçir.
Learn a new language.Yeni bir dil öğren.

Do you want to learn Turkish in 2023? Don’t put it off any longer and start learning Turkish right now with Ling App!


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Untill next time! Görüşmek üzere!

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