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Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year

The Chinese have a unique way of ringing in the new year. This celebration is a two-week affair in the Land of the Dragon.

Come celebrate!

Two weeks of celebration

Unlike the universal New Year's celebration, the date of the Chinese New Year is determined by the Chinese lunar calendar and varies every year. Most of us have to make do with only one measly New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, but the Chinese take their time to properly welcome another year with two weeks of celebrations.

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Yurou Guan
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The festivities begin on New Year's Eve, Da Nian Ye, and conclude with the Lantern Festival.

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Lion dance

Chinese New Year is first and foremost a family affair. People travel across the country to celebrate with their loved ones, causing a mass migration. Interested in participating in these festivities? Although the cities will be fairly quiet (quite a unique feat in China), there are numerous temple markets. Especially in Beijing you will find many of these markets, such as the one in Longtan Lake Park.

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Another popular feature are the many lion dances that take place across the country. Dancers donning lion costumes parade through the streets. Along the way, the public feeds them "hong paos": red envelopes with money, for good luck. The money is also a donation to the art school that organises the parade. Of course, New Year's Eve is marked by spectacular fireworks.

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Yves ANDRE


Closing Lantern Festival

The Chinese conclude their lavish New Year's celebrations with the Lantern Festival. This event takes place on the fifteenth day of the new year, during the year’s first full moon. For visitors this is one of the most interesting days to visit China: you will see lanterns everywhere you look.

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Alexander W Helin

Many of the lanterns are the traditional red round ones, but you will also spot unique creations, such as dragons, fishes and towering structures. The Yuyuan Garden in Shanghai draws thousands of visitors every year with its spectacular lantern exhibit.

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2019 is the Year of the Pig

This year's Chinese New Year will be celebrated on 5 February, officially ringing in the Year of the Pig. Chinese astrology uses twelve zodiac signs with each year representing a different animal. Of course, each animal has its own (un)fortunate characteristics.

You are a Pig if you were born in the years 1923, 1935, 1947, 1959, 1971, 1983, 1995, 2007 and 2019

Were you born in the Year of the Pig? You will find the characteristics of this sign similar to that of the Scorpio sign in Western astrology. Your lucky numbers are 2, 5 and 8. You may want to avoid the unlucky numbers 1, 7 and 9. Not sure what to wear? The colours yellow, grey, brown and gold are supposed to attract good fortune. Do you like to travel? Your best destinations for 2019 lie in the southeast or northeast.

KLM

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