Cultural events are listed here with basic background details. For specific events, dates, and times, please see the Featured Events on the Cultural Calendar main page.
Chinese New Year is one of the most important holidays on the Chinese calendar, marking the end of winter and the coming of spring. Along with the Han Chinese in and outside Greater China, as many as 29 of the 55 ethnic minority groups in China also celebrate Chinese New Year. Korea, Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines also celebrate it as an official festival.
Chinese New Year is celebrated in many ways including gathering with family on New Year’s Eve, putting up decorations, spring cleaning, and the gifting of red envelopes with money. It is also an occasion to honour one’s ancestors and pay respects to elderly relatives.
In Aotearoa New Zealand, Chinese New Year is marked with large scale public events in the main centres, such as Auckland's Chinese New Year Festival & Market Day, and Wellington's Lunar New Year Festival. Folk dances, lion and dragon dances, and a huge array of festival food are features in these public celebrations, along with fireworks of course!
The date of Chinese New Year is determined by the Chinese lunisolar calendar, usually falling on the second new moon after the Northern Hemisphere winter solstice.
In the Gregorian calendar, the first day of Chinese New Year begins on the new moon between 21st of January and 20th of February.