Throughout the Chinese year, various festivals and celebrations take place to celebrate their culture, tradition, and their way of life. For any traveler or tourist, attending any of these festivals would allow them to gain deep insight into the kind of culture that China has. From massive festivals celebrated by minorities in villages in China to the elaborate and extravagant ones celebrated by their entire nation, not one festival falls short of frolic and fun.

One of the most important festivals for China is the Spring Festival. This is the festival that celebrates the arrival of the New Year and begins days in advance. This is the time of the year when family and friends all get together to celebrate and have a good time. This festival is celebrated on the first day of the first lunar month of the Chinese calendar. The festival starts in the last month of the calendar and continues till the middle of the first month of next year. The most important is New Year’s Ever, which, for the Chinese, is the eve of the Spring Festival. The first three days of the New Year are also equally important.

Various kinds of food are made and other customs are also practiced. On the 8th day of the last month of the lunar calendar, the Chinese people make a porridge called “laba” which is made of different traditional ingredients and is also made of rice. The 23rd day of the last month sees sacrifices being made to the kitchen god. However, now, instead of sacrifice, people make a variety of delicious food out of respect for the kitchen god. This day is known as the Preliminary Eve since people make food and have a glorious celebration. After this eve, the people begin to prepare for the New Year and this is known as “Seeing the New Year in”. This is when people begin to prepare for the coming of the New Year.

This is the time of celebration and people go out to buy food to prepare delicious meals and gifts to give to their loved ones. Since this is the beginning of the year, the Chinese people make sure that everything has a new start which is why they thoroughly clean their houses and everything in it, including bed sheets, kitchen utensils and clothes. After this has been done, the decorating will begin. Red is the colour that is used for decoration and red lanterns are hung outside house doors. Apart from that, black calligraphy on red material is also pasted around the house. This includes prayers and luck for the next year as well as for blessings. Pictures of gods such as the god of wealth and the god of doors are also put right outside the door of the house to make sure no evil spirits enter the house and only wealth and happiness comes in.

On the eve of the Chinese New Year, family and friends will get together to have a meal with the main items being chicken, bean curd and fish. Having them is very important since their Chinese pronunciation means propitiousness, wealth, and fruitfulness. On the day of the Chinese New Year, children greet their parents and get money as a New Year’s gift. Since “jiaozi”, dumplings, means “bidding farewell to the old and ushering in the new”, people eat dumplings for breakfast. The shape is round which is the shape of the gold from ancient China which is why they also eat them and wish for wealth and richness. The first five days are full of celebration with friends and family and they all eat and drink together.

Other activities like the lion dancing, lantern festivals, and various fairs are held for days. In order to enjoy the festival to the fullest, the best accommodation would be to reside with a local in order to truly experience Chinese culture and tradition.

Happy Lantern Festival, Here Best places to stay and enjoy with your friends and family.

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