Chinese New Year celebrations take place all over the world, and the UK is no exception. This February, cities all around the UK will be hosting celebrations for the biggest event in the Chinese calendar.
From a spectacular parade in Central London to fireworks in Manchester and lantern making in Liverpool, read on to find a celebration near you.
When is Chinese New Year 2017?
Chinese New Year 2016 takes place on Saturday 28th January. It marks the beginning of the Year of the Rooster, and people born in this year are said to be trustworthy, observant and hardworking.
The date of Chinese New Year varies every year since it’s based on the lunar and solar calendars, but it’s always some time between late January and mid-February. Celebrations don’t always take place on Chinese New Year itself; they can last for two weeks around this time.
Where to celebrate Chinese New Year in the UK
London’s Chinese New Year celebrations are the largest outside of Asia, with most of the festivities taking place in Central London on Sunday 29th January in places like Trafalgar Square, Chinatown and the West End.
Expect dragons, decorations, music and dancing all over Chinatown and thousands of people heading to the city to join in the celebrations. The celebrations will start with a colourful Chinese parade that snakes its way through the West End, followed by performances in Trafalgar Square. The parade is completely free to attend with a fireworks display as the grand finale.
Manchester’s Chinese New Year festivities will be taking place between Thursday 26th and Sunday 29th January 2017 with a whole host of events to celebrate the Year of the Rooster.
There’ll be loads going on but this year’s highlight will be the spectacular Lanterns of the Terracotta Warriors. Follow @CNY_MCR on Twitter for more information and to stay up to date with what’s going on.
Liverpool has a large Chinese community so expect lots of festivities to be taking place in the city. Chinatown will be the main hub for Liverpool’s CNY celebrations with lantern-making workshops, delicious food and a dragon, unicorn and lion parade as well as a spectacular fire cracker display at Great George Square.
Birmingham’s Chinese New Year celebrations will be taking place on Sunday 29th January 2017 with an afternoon of free entertainment at the Arcadian Centre – an annual tradition.
There’ll be lion dances, funfair rides and street food as well as plenty of traditional entertainment. Not to be missed if you’re in Birmingham!
Other ways to celebrate Chinese New Year
You don’t have to go out to celebrate CNY 2017 – there are loads of ways to celebrate at home or school too. So if you’re thinking of holding your own Chinese New Year celebrations, take a look through our party ideas for inspiration.
Throw a Chinese New Year party
Whether you’re celebrating at home or at school, throwing a party is a great way to teach children about China. Stock up on fortune cookies, lanterns and decorations and have a read of our Chinese New Year party ideas for inspiration.
Wear something red
Red is the key colour for Chinese New Year and wearing it will bring you luck for the rest of the year. Alternatively, you could hang red lanterns like this in your house for good luck.
Make your own Chinese lanterns
Making your own Chinese paper lanterns is a fun Chinese New Year activity and a great way to teach your children about Chinese traditions. And it’s super easy with our free printables – download them here and follow our step-by-step instructions to find out what to do.
Get a dragon piñata
Dragons are an iconic symbol of Chinese New Year so if you’re throwing a party to celebrate, how about getting a dragon piñata like this? It’ll look great as part of your decorations and kids of all ages will have fun trying to break it!
Thinking of throwing your own party for Chinese New Year 2017? Browse our full selection of Chinese New Year decorations here to pick up everything you need. Or for even more party ideas, stay on our blog: