Eight Traditions to Welcome in Chinese New Year
1. Clean House
Prior to the Lunar New Year, it’s a tradition to pick up a broom and sweep away bad luck from the previous year to make room for the good. This is as an opportunity to spring-clean – time to dispose of unnecessary clutter, do the dreaded bathtub scrub, and clean out your pantry. Hopefully you’ll feel like you’ve swept away the regrets, mistakes, and bad decisions of yesteryear.
2. Get a New Look for the New Year
It’s customary to prepare for the New Year by getting haircuts and new outfits. Any excuse to go shopping! Hence we recommend attending our very successful (and free) event New Clothes for the New Year (Sat 1 Feb, Michael Fowler Centre, 7pm-8.30pm) where one can peruse local and international fashion, and ready to purchase right here in Wellington city.
3. Settle Debts (and Drama)
Chinese New Year is a good time to put behind money and relationship troubles. Pay off the credit card bill and use any leftover funds to treat yum char for someone you haven’t seen for a while.
4. Eat – lots
Most of the new year is meant to spend inside the family home, eating, relaxing, and spending time together. But you could book a table for a traditional Chinese banquet – our Participating Restaurants offer some delicious foods specially created for this occasion, and for an amazing experience, check out when a traditional lion dance could appear at your table! Go home if to feast with the family, but if you can’t, make a date to share a meal with your friends. Just remember to call your parents and grandparents to wish them health, wealth, and happiness. That way, you can get some of that moolah, which brings us to tradition #5.
5. Get That Hoong Bouw (red envelopes stuffed with cash)
The Hoong Bouw is probably THE best tradition growing up. Typically given to the children and the unmarried, these little red envelopes usually contain coins or notes – and all gratefully accepted!
6. Go Red and Gold
The month of February is all about decking the halls with red and gold. Visit some local Chinese grocery stores that sell paper cut outs, Chinese scrolls, and gorgeous lucky knots and ornaments.
The lion dance – one of the most famous Chinese cultural traditions – is totally necessary during any festival but you can hear them all year round; opening new restaurants or commencing an activity. These lions traditionally bring good luck and prosperity and drive away evil, so come and enjoy them at our Festival.
8. Come and Celebrate!
Come join us at the Wellington’s Chinese New Year Festival celebrations – Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd February. There’s something for everyone; food, craft, local and international entertainment, colourful street parade. Check out the full programme .