Celebrate Chinese New Year 2017!

Friday 27 January 2017

Celebrated on the first day of the Chinese lunar calendar, Chinese New Year is a spring festival which this year will officially take place from 27 January to 2 February 2017. Wear red and jade for luck, and join in with one of these colourful celebrations taking place across Britain.

Taste Chinese delicacies in London, England

Head over to the capital and take part in London's Chinese New Year celebrations which are free to attend. Join in the colourful Chinese parade that dances its way through the West End before heading over to Trafalgar Square where you can see stage performances, dance troupes, acrobats, dragon and flying lion dances, opera and martial art acts. The Chinese New Year ends with a grand finale of fireworks and a spectacular show. Make sure to stop by at Chinatown where you can sample traditional delicacies at an abundance of restaurants and pop-up food stands.

Getting there: taking place in London, the celebrations can be easily reached via the London Underground. Chinatown is closest to Leicester Square station.

Mark the end of Chinese New Year in Durham, north-east England

Join Durham University Oriental Museum for their unique late night opening to mark the end of Chinese New Year and the Lunar New Year Lantern Festival. For one night only, visitors can see the museum lit by lanterns, enjoy traditional craft, and listen to stories. Even better, the event is free for children under five, and just £2 for all other visitors, and the first 100 children receive a free lantern.   

When? 11 February 2017

Getting there: The Oriental Museum is a five-minute drive from Durham city centre. Durham is in the north of England and roughly three hours by car from London.

Go dragon spotting in Manchester, north England

Chinese New Year

To commemorate the Year of the Rooster, the Dragon Parade will take to the streets of Manchester to celebrate Chinese New Year.

Chinatown Manchester

See the parade, led by a spectacular 50-foot dragon, as it makes its way to Chinatown, where you'll find traditional Chinese entertainment, more than 6,000 lanterns adorning the streets, lion dances, street food villages and a firework finale.

Additionally, this year will also see the acclaimed international art exhibition ‘Lanterns of the Terracotta Warriors', which will be heading to Manchester for the celebrations.

Lanterns of the Terracotta Lantern

When? 26 - 29 January 2017. 

Getting there: Manchester is in the north-west of England, and is a two-hour train journey from London.

If Chinese New Year seems so far away head to the Festival of Light, Wiltshire, south-west England

Longleat Festival of Light

If you just can't wait for Chinese New Year, get a taste of the spectacular lights that are yet to come across the country at Longleat's Festival of Light. As well as marking Longleat Safari Park's 50th birthday, the Festival of Light will also celebrate Beatrix Potter's 150th anniversary, and so will combine the park's safari animals with some of the author's iconic characters in a light extravaganza. Expect a modern take on the traditional Chinese lantern, but on a grand scale, and be illuminated by giant lions, awed by humongous porcelain elephants, and blown away by the icing on the giant cake (quite literally)!

When? 11 November 2016 - 2 January 2017

Getting there: Located in Wiltshire, Longleat Safari Park is in south-west England and is less than three hours by car from London.

Get a taste of the Orient in Cardiff, Wales

Indulge at The Crispy Duck, and oriental fusion restaurant whose menu takes inspiration from Japan, China, Thailand and Malaysia and specialises in Chinese and Japanese cuisine. Perfect all year round, and especially over Chinese New Year, The Crispy Duck is a fitting place to welcome in the Year of the Rooster.

Getting there: Cardiff is in Wales, and is a two-hour train journey from London.

Find the Spirit of the Orient on the Isle of Wight, south England

Back due to popular demand, visitors can once again experience a spectacle of themed light, sound and entertainment at Robin Hill's ‘Spirit of the Orient'. As darkness falls, be immersed in the lush colours, flavours and magic of the Asian sub-continent set in Robin Hill's glorious ancient woodland, which captures the spirit of Chinese New Year. Spot the authentic tea ceremonies and take part in the interactive dragon procession, before seeing an evening of falconry displays.

Whilst on the Isle of Wight, visitors can really embrace the Year of the Rooster with a visit to Tapnell Farm Park. The family fun attraction has an immersive 'Moo-seum' of beef and dairy history, a large indoor soft play barn, a cafe to relax in, outdoor activity areas with pedal go karts and a 'jumping pillow', and informative farm tours. Get up close and personal with a friendly mix of farm yard animals, including wallabies and meerkats! Even better, there will be a real rooster for little ones to meet over February half-term.

When? Spirit of the Orient: 27 - 29 January 2017, various dates in February 2017. Tapnell Farm Park is open year round.

Getting there: The Isle of Wight is an island off the south-coast of England. It is a three and a half hour journey by car and ferry from London.

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