The Chinese New Year (CNY) 2016 is “Year of the Monkey“. Hong Kong (and whole China) is getting ready to celebrate one of the most important Chinese holidays.

When is 2016 Chinese New Year celebrations ?

Chinese New Year, which is also known as Spring Festival, starts on the First Day of the Chinese Lunar Calendar.

For 2016, Chinese New Year falls on February 8th. The celebration and activities are earlier than last year (only 39 days after the 1st of 2016).

Hong Kong will celebrate and welcome the “Year of the Monkey” with several big events and activities from February 2nd to February 22nd, 2016..

More to Know :
2016 Hong Kong Public Holidays

Traditions in Hong Kong on Chinese New Year Holidays

Hong Kong was the British colony for over 150 years. The fusion of Chinese and British culture gives Hong Kong a very unique way of celebrating Chinese New Year. Combining ancient culture with a unique touch of cosmopolitan modern flair, festivities and special events are spread out over three weeks.

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Similar to Western’s Christmas, Chinese New Year is one of the most important traditional holidays in Hong Kong. People will celebrate this holiday with all kinds of traditions.

  • Family will gather together no matter how busy they are;
  • Locals will give out red pockets (with cash) to friends, colleagues or people whoever helped them in the past year for good wishes;
  • Auspicious and lucky foods such as black moss (Cantonese pronunciation is Fat Choy, similar to ‘prosperity’), sticky rice cake, sweet glutinous rice balls (tang yuan) are eaten and wishing for good luck in the coming year;
  • Some families will visit the fortune tellers for good fortune in one of the many temples;
  • Shopping malls, restaurants and offices are decorated with zodiac monkey all around Hong Kong;
  • Shopping malls and shops will hire Lion Dance group to perform for good luck;

Government will also hold many large celebrations and events to welcome “Year of the Monkey”. The most popular events every year are: Flower Markets, Cathay Pacific Night Parade, Chinese New Year Fireworks Show.

Are you anxious to experience and celebrate 21 days packed with age-old traditions, cultural festivities and events?

Parts of the Chinese New Year Celebration are the Lunar New Year Lantern Carnivals. Foreign visitors have a unique chance to experience some traditional Chinese culture and traditions during the Chinese New Year.

The 2016 Lunar New Year Lantern Carnivals features spectacular lantern displays as well as various performances including classical songs, dances and traditional stage arts. Furthermore, visitors can enjoy popular and traditional Chinese New Year activities such as nostalgic games, palm-reading and lantern riddle games at the 2016 Lunar New Year Lantern Carnivals.

In case you are in Hong Kong you should not miss the opportunity to visit and enjoy one of the most celebrated events of the year. There are several Lunar New Year Lantern Carnivals throughout Hong Kong in 2015 (probably will be in 2016 as well). We will update the schdule once there is confirmed information.

  • Lunar New Year Lantern Display

Venue: Hong Kong Cultural Centre Piazza

  • Urban Lunar New Year Lantern Carnival 2015

Venue: Hong Kong Cultural Centre

  • New Territories East Lunar New Year Lantern Carnival 2015

Venue: Tseung Kwan O Po Chui Park

  • New Territories West Lunar New Year Lantern Carnival 2015

Venue: Tin Shui Wai Park

The admission to the Lunar New Year Lantern Carnivals are free of charge.

One of the most frequent questions we receive is: “Are shops, shopping malls and restaurants open during the Chinese New Year in Hong Kong?”.

The majority of shops, shopping malls usually will close on the 1st and 2nd of Chinese Lunar Year (this year is Feb 8 and Feb 9). However, malls and restaurants in the major tourist areas may remain opening during the Chinese New Year celebration.

Usually, the days before Chinese New Year, some of the big shopping malls will extend their business and opening hours and decorated their malls with a special theme to attract more shoppers and visitors.

Please note that whether the shops and restaurants will open during CNY varies according to the regulation of different cooperations. Normally small and traditional shops and restaurants (e.g. Chinese Medicine Stores, family run restaurants, dried seafood shops, etc.) will be closed for longer time (4-7 days).

Major sightseeing attractions as well as theme parks will remain open during this period and usually have a unique Chinese New Year decoration.

box-info2 Author Says

  • “Be prepared that – no matter which event, activity or show you like to watch, join and/or participate, be aware that it will very, very (!) crowded.”