« Kung Hei Fat Choi » or “Happy New Year” prepare yourself to hear this words in loop during the festivities planned for the Chinese New Year which begin on the 29th of January.
With over 150 000 persons every year, it constitutes one of the most important event among the Chinese community of London but also from all over the world and depending on the Chinese calendar the monkey will pass the relay to the rooster, for a year placed under the symbol of renewal and prosperity.
Throughout the 15 days festivities, Chinatown, area easily identifiable due to the pagodas that mark the both entrance, will illumine in red and gold while transporting you in the heart of Asia. You will have the opportunity to taste the meals and traditional foods but also attend to several events that will invade the streets of Chinatown.
In the program of this amazing day, attend to diferents revue in the West End (Trafalgar Square), stalls of food and crafts, lion dance, live performance with Chinese dancers (particulary around Leicester Square) and finally see the firework.
Admitettly, the chinese population has make of this place, an area inside the area, with all the restaurants, shops, grocery, bars, it is now one of the most frequent in the world. Perpetuating the tradition and customs, they believe on the idea that for a good start, celebrating the New Year in this way, does good omen for the coming year.
Indeed, the legend spoke that in the ancient China, lived a monster strange and fierce, the Nian. He terrorized the habitants and appeared just one time a year, the day before the New Year, for devour newborns. The habitants made flee the monster due to the noise like firecrackers and flame emanating from bamboo fire. They never saw him again.
Since, every vigil of the New Year, families sticks red paper, light candles and explose firecrackers for the purposes of celebrate the New Year.
Chinatown don’t derogate to the tradition, since you can see the red color absolutely everywhere, smell the perfume of candles and heard the firecrackers click in order to avoid the Nian, until the light of day.
You can also spot several red and gold lamps which are arranged in all the area for all the entire duration of the festivities, that concludes with the lantern festival. Customs want that the last night of the festivities, people go out in the street with lanterns in the hand, written on it, some enigma or riddles are being asked to bystanders for fun.
After all why not celebrate the New Year once again!
Little advice : Wear red color, it seems that lucky charm!
Underground : Picadilly or Leicester Square, 4 min by walk.
Day time : 10:00 AM to 06:00PM on the 29th January 2017.
To find us: House London Trip