Chinese New Year (also known as the Spring Festival) is one of the biggest and most traditional celebrations and holidays in Chinese culture, with families and friends coming together to celebrate and decorate their homes and towns. Landing on a different day each year, this year sees the Year of the Rooster on January 28th, and with cultural events and activities now taking place across the globe - it's not something to miss out on!
Lucky foods, extravagant dances, giant decorations and parades flood the streets of cities in the UK now, bringing together not only Chinese locals, but whole neighbourhoods. Here's a run down of the events that might be happening near you:
Home to BMC Cultural Exchange, Newcastle's own China Town on Stowell Street will be celebrating on Sunday 29th January with performances, music, craft workshops and food. Although the majority of celebrations will be held there, you can also find events on at Bath Lane and Thornton Square, such as a chinese market, on-stage entertainment, traditional dancing and music and stalls.
One of the biggest places for Chinese New Year is with no doubt London, with it's own fantastic parade and continuous events. It's been warned that if you're wanting to eat on New Year's day to book one of the hundreds of great Chinese restaurants ahead - they will get busy!
Main celebration starts at 10am 29th January, Charing Cross Road and Shaftesbury Avenue and continues throughout the centre of London. Expect very big things and a huge party throughout the day.
Head over to Colmore Row on Friday 27th January in Birmingham to see the traditional Chinese Lion and Dragon make their journey to bring in the Year of the Rooster, then on Sunday 29th make sure you're in the Chinese Quarter to join in on the free events and activities happening throughout the day! Street food, carnival atmosphere and the biggest celebration in Birmingham yet is promised on the day from 11am.
This year Manchester hasn't just got the one event of for Chinese New Year but a whole round of them, so you have no excuse if you're in the area to not celebrate the Year of the Rooster! From the 'Lanterns of the Terracotta Warriers', to live music, street dances, workshops and of course the grand parade on January 29th in Albert Square at midday.
From Friday 27th January - Sunday 29th, Liverpool will be hosting a multitude of events, including a beautiful and fascinating "12-minute lumiere creation" on Liverpool's Chinese Arch, telling the story of 'JIngwei and the Ocean'. Head to Bold Street on the 29th for the full parade, events and music.
Two events are being held this year for celebrations in Nottingham - on January 21st at Old Market Square there is an "extravaganza" from 11am, with stalls and the traditional Dragon Dance. On January 28th head to Hockley supermarket for food stalls and traditional Asian dumplings, as well as a Lion Dance from 12.30pm.
Such as other cities, Southampton are spreading their celebrations across a host of days to allow for various events throughout the month. Starting on the 14th January at Southampton Guildhall Square, to the main celebration on 29th Jan at West Quay Shopping Centre, the Chinese Association in Southampton have received a large grant for the celebrations, and have performers, dancers, stalls, music and events each weekend to bring in the Year of the Rooster, and communities together.
If we haven't mentioned your hometown celebrations, share them with us and let everyone know the amazing events going on!
Have fun and Happy New Year!