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Chinese Holidays and Celebrations

There are a number of important holidays and celebrations in Chinese society. These are spread throughout the calendar year and in some cases can be fairly big events. Some of the holidays and celebrations that you should be aware of are:

Major Public Holidays

There are 4 major public holidays these are:

Gregorian calendar New Year

The Gregorian New Year (January 1 st ) is celebrated throughout China and is a government holiday. Chinese celebrations of this holiday will typically mirror traditional celebrations around the world. The Gregorian new year holiday will generally last for 3 days.

Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year or the spring festival occurs on the first day of the year (western calendar) to have a new moon and ends 15 days later. Chinese New Year will usually occur between the 22 nd of January and February 20 th . Only on vary rare occasions will Chinese New Year be celebrated in March. In China the New Year festival is celebrated for 7 days and is a statutory labor holiday. Chinese New Year is celebrated with fireworks and dragon dances as these are believed to scare away evil spirits. However, each of the first 15 days has its own special celebrations.

Labor Day (May Day)

A world wide labor holiday, Labor Day is celebrated in China on May 1 st and lasts for 7 days. Generally Labor Day celebrates the social and economic achievements of workers as a result of the international labor movement, in China this holiday is also referred to as International Workers day. In China this holiday thanks workers and labor unions for their hard work as this keeps with the countries political ideals. Youth day, a celebration of the May fourth movement in 1919, also takes place during this holiday.

National Day

Celebrating the establishment of the People's Republic of China (PRC) in 1949, National Day occurs on October 1 st every year and celebrations will last for 7 days. National Day is also celebrated in Macau and Hong Kong, although these cities will only partake in the first day.

Minor Holidays

Chinese Peoples Congress (CPC) Founding Day

Celebrating the formation of the first national congress in 1921, this holiday is held on July 1 st every year.

Maritime Day

July 11 th marks the anniversary of the great Chinese sailor Zheng He's first voyage. There will be large celebrations in many costal areas.

Army Day

Army day celebrates the Nanchang uprising on August 1 st , 1927. It is therefore celebrated on August 1 st every year.

Ching Ming (Qing Ming Jie)

Ching Ming will usually occur in early April. The exact time of the holiday is the 104 th day after the winter solstice, and is therefore not on a specific Gregorian calendar day. Ching Ming is where families will gather to pay respects to the ancestors by sweeping and tidying graves.

Dragon boat festival

Dragon boat festival (also known as Tuen Ng Jit and Duan Wu Jie) is always held on the fifth day of the fifth month in the Chinese calendar. As the name suggests this holiday is traditionally celebrated by dragon boat races and by participating in water related activities.

Chung Yeung festival

Chung Yeung or Celebration of the hungry ghost is a festival that usually occurs mid to late October. Chung Yeung is celebrated by honoring wandering spirits. At this time there will be many burnt offerings being made and people will go on hikes.

Mid Autumn Festival

Sometime mislabeled as "lantern festival", this holiday is usually celebrated by gathering friends and family together to look at the moon. Mid autumn festival is usually held during September on the 15 th day of the 8 th lunar month when the moon is at its brightest. It also traditionally celebrates the harvest.

Celebrations that are not Holidays

Double Seven festival

Held on the seventh day of the seventh month, the double seven festival is the Chinese equivalent of Valentines Day. Traditional ways of celebrating closely mirror those of the west.

Buddha's Birthday

Celebrating the day that Buddha was enlightened (or his true birth), many Buddhist Chinese will celebrate by visiting a temple and being blessed.

Confucius' Birthday

Confucius is the most celebrated intellectual in Chinese history. He is credited with establishing the Chinese social and political standards of practice. This day is dedicated to honoring his memory.

China Health Insurance is available throughout all of these holidays to help you with any problems that you may have. Our China office can provide in depth information and work to address any potential issues. If you would like more information about an international medical insurance plan for china, or you would like to receive a free quote, please contact us.



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