Chinese New Year offers the perfect opportunity for you to get involved in the spectacular celebrations happening across the UK and liven up your student accommodation with festive colours!
Where to Go?
Many of the festivities will unfold in Central London, especially Chinatown and Trafalgar Square. Events are also taking place in Birmingham, Sheffield, Leeds, Newcastle, Liverpool and Manchester. Look out for fireworks, lantern displays, delicious, seasonal Chinese cuisine, and parades of the famous Chinese dragons and lions. It’s the perfect occasion for students looking to experience the unique wonder that is Chinese New Year — even if it means just watching the fireworks from your window with a hot bowl of noodles!
What’s Your Sign?
Though not a public holiday in the UK, the festival has been celebrated for thousands of years. It marks the Lunar New Year in the Chinese calendar and is associated with the Chinese zodiac. It has a cycle of twelve years, each named after one of the five elements (wood, fire, earth, metal, water) as well as a particular animal (rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog, pig). It is believed that people tend to reflect the personality traits of whichever animal they are born under. The next time you’re set for a quiet night in with your flatmates, find out what year they were born in and figure out their personality types!
The colour red takes pride of place during Chinese New Year and is commonly used on lanterns and clothing. This fiery shade has been said to ward off evil spirits. Why not dig out something red for the day? It may add a much-needed splash of colour to your boring lectures!
How’s Your Luck?
Going to a high point on Chinese New Year’s Day can bring you luck with education. Head up to the terrace of your accommodation with a beverage of your choice and maybe luck will find you there! After all, every little bit helps!
Chinese New Year is one of those unique cultural celebrations that have something to offer to everyone. Even students on a tight budget can participate in free events all over the country but if you are dreaming of takeaway, double-check your local Chinese opening times, just in case!
Written by Rebecca Yeomans