Chinese New Year Day - 2021 Year of the Cow
2021 is the year of the White Metal Cow. 2021 Chinese New Year Day is on Friday, February 12, 2021, in China time zone. The Chinese New Year's Eve is on Thursday, February 11, 2021. They are national holidays in China. Usually, the New Year holiday is at least five days long from Chinese New Year's eve. Plus Saturday and Sunday, the legal holiday could expand to seven days long.
The first day of Chinese Spring is on February 3, 2021. The Chinese call this date Li-Chun
Chinese New Year Day - Celebration
Traditionally, the first thing to do right after waking up in the morning of Chinese New Year Day in China is to open the door and set off firecrackers. Today, many Chinese don't sleep in the Chinese New Year's Eve and wait for the Chinese New Year Day coming. As soon as midnight is passed, people at home should be able to hear the sound of firecrackers one after another.
The sound of firecrackers and fireworks tells people the New Year has
arrived. People offer New Year's greetings while they are watching TV shows,
enjoying the fireworks or gambling. They have to send greetings to parents or
eldest members in the house first, then to siblings. The most popular
greeting is Gong Xi Fa Chai
Some Chinese families change the new clothes right after midnight or the Rat hour (11 p.m. to 1 a.m.) in the Chinese New Year's Eve. Then they choose the lucky hour from Chinese Farmer's Calendar to worship spirits and ancestors with candles, fruit, rice cake, tea, long noodle, and candies. The purpose of this worship to tell spirits and ancestors the New Year arrives. At the end of the ceremony, they will open the door, select a lucky money direction to explode the firecrackers, which means to get rid of old bad stuff and welcome the new coming. Chinese families give the Red Envelope to children at this time, then the children go to bed.
After dawn, it's time to say Chinese New Year greetings to neighbors, friends, coworkers, and relatives. the time of the telephone, school teachers will go back to school to greet each other. Government employees will go back to the office to say happy New Year. Now many people say Gong Xi Fa Chai by phone or send the greeting by e-mail.
On the Chinese New Year day, the Chinese eat breakfast without meat from the New Year's Eve leftover. At noon, they have to worship the Spirit of the House with simple animal sacrifices, vegetables, and rice. In the evening, they worship family ancestors again with full dinner food.
Chinese New Year Day - Red Envelope
In the morning, all the children are supposed to wear new clothes, pants, shoes, a hat, or a jacket. Every family should prepare many different kinds of sweet candies in a tray for people visiting their houses. If a child goes with an adult to visit someone and says Gong Xi Fa Chai, he can receive a Red Envelope. In Taiwan, the president, city mayors, and temples will prepare many Red Envelopes for their supporters. Since the number of Red Envelopes is limited, people have to go earlier and wait in a long line to have a handshake and Red Envelope.
Chinese New Year is closed to the early spring. That means it's the beginning of the blossom season. The popular flowers for Chinese New Year are orchid, narcissuses, peach flowers, chrysanthemum, kumquat, cherry blossoms, camellia and so on. So some people like to visit the flower garden or attend flower expo to enjoy the sight of flowers or bring some flower pots home.
Some Chinese would like to take the whole family to the countryside to enjoy the beautiful scenery. Some like to go to the temple to see the crowd and pray for coming luck. Today, more young people go to department stores to spend their Red Envelope money and shop for the New Year special bargains or go to the movie theater with friends. Certainly, some are still like to sit by the Mah-Jong table to earn money.
Chinese New Year Day - Lion Dancing
It's getting less chance to see the lion dancing or dragon dancing in the modern city street. People have to go to national culture streets to see the Chinese New Year's traditional activities. Over there, people can see lion dance, the god of money, parade, open theater opera, puppet show, etc. They also can buy different traditional candies, their zodiac animal symbols, food, gifts from the culture stores.
Chinese keep the lion dancing custom is because that they think lion image can expel the evil spirit away. Chinese believe that the dragon is in charge of rain. The dragon dancing is praying for appropriate rain to grow the more crops during the farmer society. Also, the dragon is an auspicious and notable symbol which can bring people luck. You can watch the Lion Dancing video from the following link - video of Chinese New Year Lion Dancing.
The unique style of music for Chinese New Year can hear at Chinese New Year Music (MP3). You can hear that music from department stores, radio stations, TV stations, and during the lion dancing or dragon dancing on the street.
Chinese New Year Day - Coming Years
2022 is the year of the Black Water Tiger. 2022 Chinese New Year Day is on Tuesday, February 1, 2022. The new moon time at China Time Zone is 13:48 on 2/1/2022.
2023 is the year of the Black Water Rabbit. 2023 Chinese New Year Day is on Sunday, January 22, 2023. The new moon time at China Time Zone is 4:56 on 1/22/2023.
2024 is the year of the Green Wood Dragon. 2024 Chinese New Year Day is on Saturday, February 10, 2024. The new moon time at China Time Zone is 7:01 on 2/10/2024.
2025 is the year of the Green Wood Snake. 2025 Chinese New Year Day is on Wednesday, January 29, 2025. The new moon time at China Time Zone is 20:39 on 1/29/2025.
2026 is the year of the Red Fire Horse. 2026 Chinese New Year Day is on Tuesday, February 17, 2026. The new moon time at China Time Zone is 20:04 on 2/17/2026.
- 2021 Chinese New Year - Year of White Cow
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Chinese New Year 15-Day celebrations
Chinese Spring Festival is the longest holiday of the year. Many Chinese take this advantage to travel. Many young Chinese today could plan to visit different geographical cities, famous sceneries, vacation resorts or travel to different provinces, states or countries. They might spend their Chinese New Year's Eve in a foreign country to experience different styles of Chinese New Year.
The current population of China is more than 1.41 billion at the end of 2018. Overseas Chinese have at least 50 million. That means more than Chinese 1.46 billion will celebrate the Chinese New Year around the world. Many China towns and Chinese communities in the USA celebrate Chinese Lunar New Year too. They have different schedules for the 2021 Chinese New Year Parade.
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There are some traditional taboos and superstitions on the Chinese New Year Day at Chinese New Year Taboo page.