Traveling To China? Check Out These Amazing Festivals

Are you traveling to China any time soon? If so, there is no better way to soak up the best of Chinese culture than by attending a traditional Chinese festival. While in China, you must check out these amazing festivals:

Chinese New Year. This festival takes place–you guessed it–at the very beginning of the Chinese lunar new year, which occurs sometime between late January and early February, and there is no Chinese festival that compares to this one in terms of color, festivities, and importance. If you have the choice, plan your trip to China at the first of the year to take in this awe inspiring display of fireworks, traditional dragon and lion dancing, and Yangke performances.

Lantern Festival. Actually the tail end of the Chinese New Year Festival, the Lantern Festival takes place on the 15th day of the first lunar new year month. According to legend, the practice of lighting colorful lanterns and parading them through the streets during this festival is symbolic of the lanterns lit by townspeople many centuries ago to avert the Jade Emperor of Heaven’s plan of vengeance by fire.

Dragon Boat Festival. Taking place on the 5th day of the 5th lunar month of the year (usually June in the Gregorian calendar that we use), the Dragon Boat Festival used to be a religious tradition, but it is now all fun and festivity. This day is in memoriam of the death of poet and state minister Qu Yuan, who committed suicide in the Miluo River in protest against the government. Legend has it that the Chinese people threw dumplings to the fish to keep them from eating Qu Yuan’s body while they searched the river up and down by boat. Today, at a Dragon Boat festival, you can eat the same Chinese dumplings, called zongzi, and watch dragon boat races.

Mid-Autumn Festival. This festival, which takes place on the 15th day of the 17th lunar month (usually late September or early October), is perhaps the second most important Chinese festival of the year, next to the New Year festival. The Mid-Autumn festival centers on a celebration of the moon, and during this time you can watch dragon boat racing, eat plenty of tasty moon cakes, and revel in the meaning of the moon: unity, wholeness, and family reunion.

How do you make the most out of your Chinese vacation? Many would say that the only way to do that is to experience the culture of China through a traditional Chinese festival. Consider these amazing festivals, and plan for a journey you will never forget.

About the Author: Erica Hall loves to travel and has been to China several times. She recommends you ask your China travel agent about festivals happening while you’re traveling so that you can be sure other attractions will be open before or after as well.

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