As percussion smashes and firecrackers snap, crackle and pop against the night sky, it must be that time of year again: Chinese New Year! Also called Spring Festival or Lunar New Year, it is a massive festival among Chinese communities worldwide.
Chinese New Year 2023, the Year of the Rabbit, falls on 22nd January this year. The London Chinatown Chinese Association (LCCA) will run the festivities – which should attract hundreds of thousands of people to the capital.
So to ensure you know what you’re doing, here are practical tips on where to celebrate Chinese New Year in London this year.
From Charing Cross to Chinatown
Join the Chinese New Year parade and watch impressive colourful floats where more than 50 teams participate. It’ll showcase the largest display of Chinese lions and dragons in Europe. The parade starts on Charing Cross Road and continues through Shaftesbury Avenue in Chinatown.
Traditionally there are lots of chores to work on New Year’s Eve, with spring cleaning, haircutting and other tasks to tick off. Still, the most important thing to remember is to organise or host a big celebratory dinner. Whether you choose dumplings or dim sum, London’s lively Chinatown district is the best place to go.
Almost the entire West End fills with music, pyrotechnics, dancing lions, martial art displays, craft stalls and singers as Chinese New Year approaches. Due to its role as the epicentre of Chinese fun, this slice of London is extremely popular, so get there early if you don’t want to watch it from afar.
If you’re taking the kids out for these big celebrations, creative sets and activities will take place in Trafalgar Square at the National Gallery or Leicester Square, where your children can try out calligraphy or traditional Chinese outfits.
If you’re coming specially to London for the Chinese New Year celebrations and wish to add up even more extraordinary experiences to your journey, take a look at our London Tours or Day Tours from London.