As the holiday season comes in full swing, there are many ways to surprise your family and loved ones with memorable gifts. One great way to start 2016 is by planning a trip to celebrate the new year- the Chinese New Year that is! A vacation to China is not only a great adventure, but an opportunity to learn about a different culture during one of their most celebrated holidays of the year. Many people might wonder what the Chinese New Year entails, but Arpin Travel Services is your go-to travel agency to explain some of the basics.
Though China celebrates New Years as we do in western countries on January 1, they also have a traditional Chinese New Years, also known as Spring Festival. Celebration starts on Chinese New Years Eve, which falls on the last day of the last month on the solar-lunar Chinese Calendar. This year February 7, 2016 begins the week-long festivities that have survived China for over 4,000 years.
Just as Christmas and other holidays bring together families in western culture, the Chinese New Year does just the same. As it is a national holiday, many businesses close for the week to condone family gatherings, more specifically feasting at the Reunion Dinner on New Years Eve, and cleaning as a fresh start to the new year.
Throughout the week there are many traditions, new and old, that are upheld and happily completed by Chinese citizens. Listening to a New Year Bell, giving lucky money to children, watching lion and dragon dances, setting off fireworks, obeying New Year taboos, hanging up New Year’s decorations and paintings, and greeting others with good wishes are only a few customs that occur in seven short days. Each of these practices are to ensure the start of a great year full of happiness and success.
Typically, as the Chinese New Year comes to a close, the Lantern Festival commences. The festival holds a variety of intricate lanterns with different sizes and colors with many that are the shapes of animals, fish, and dragons as well. Lighting these lanterns represents the smooth transition and best wishes for the new year ahead. This is only a glimpse into the celebration of Asian countries and its importance to their heritage.
Go on, it’s time you experience it for yourself. Call us today to book your next trip to China at (508) 883-1013.