Also Called: Lunar New Year
Duration: 15 days
Celebrated by: Chinese and Taoists
Attractions: Lion Dance, Amazing Fireworks
Amongst the Chinese, the Chinese New Year is the most important annual
festival which is observed with many rituals and customs. Lasts for
complete 2 weeks, Chinese New Year is celebrated with high spirits in
Malaysia too. It is celebrated according to the Chinese Lunar Calendar
that was invented around 300 BC. Also known as Lunar New Year, it falls
usually in the month of January or February. The celebrations continue
for 15 days, but the main rituals are performed during the first three
Arrangements for the festival start quite early, when people clean and
decorate their houses and bring gifts for their dear & near ones.
The color 'Red' which symbolizes prosperity and luck is used liberally
in decorations because it is considered to ward off evil spirits. On the
eve of Chinese New Year, glittering fireworks make the sky simply
dazzling. Usually, families and friends arrange a joint dinner on the
eve to greet the New Year.
Youngsters pay a visit to their relatives and friends, and are given
'ang paus' that is actually a red packet containing lucky money. 'Ang
paus' is believed to bring prosperity and success. As per the beliefs
and traditions, Chinese New Year is the occasion when spirits appear and
offerings are made to the Gods. On the big day, the conventional dragon
and lion dances are performed together with banging gongs, drums and
cymbals. People wear new clothes and eat Mandarin Orange to welcome the
Chingay Parade catches the attention of everyone with its festive mood,
where you can trace stilt walkers, acrobatic performances and lion and
dragon dances. At this time, many hotels and shopping complexes arrange
performances by eminent artists to entertain their guests. Chinese New
Year is amongst few festivals, which is observed throughout the world.
In Malaysia, Penang is a great place to observe and enjoy the
celebrations of Chinese New Year.