Traditionally London’s Chinese New Year celebrations are the biggest outside of Asia, with Chinatown, Trafalgar Square and the West End transformed with parades, performances and displays of all things Chinese. And like everything else over the last year, London’s Chinese New Year will be a lot different in 2021, with all physical activities cancelled. So, how can you celebrate Chinese New Year from the comfort of your Vauxhall student accommodation?
But first what year is it?
2021 of course. No what Chinese Zodiac year is it? Ah, 2021 is the year of the Ox.
Each year Chinese New Year falls between January 21st and February 20th as the Chinese year follows the lunar calendar. This year New Years Day falls on February 12th with all the New Years Eve celebrations taking place on February 11th.
Can I watch the celebrations in China?
You sure can. Every year China Central Television (CCTV) broadcast a New Year’s Gala, on New Year’s Eve, (February 11th) from noon. The Gala is an entertainment show with everything from Comedy performances to song and dance, acrobatics, magic and Operatic performances.
The TV show has the largest audience for any TV broadcast in the world with 1.2 billion viewers in 2020. 2021’s Gala can be viewed live on YouTube | Facebook | CCTV
How can I celebrate at home?
Apart from live streaming the New Year’s gala, you can:
Clean your home
On NYE Chinese families will clean their homes; sweeping floors, washing clothes and generally tidying up is said to be a traditional way to bring in the new year with the dust and dirt representing old things, so by cleaning you’re doing away with the old and preparing for the new. However, cleaning on New Year’s Day is one of Chinese culture’s No No’s as all the good fortune of the New Year would be swept away.
Decorate your home
By decorating your home with traditional decorations such as Couplets, paper decorations such as lanterns are said to drive away evil spirits and bring you good luck for the new year.
Give red envelopes
Sharing red envelopes or a hong bao with a small monetary gift is a long-held tradition in Chinese culture. Through giving red envelopes, you are sharing good wishes.
What would be a Chinese New Year celebration without a good Chinese meal? With restaurants closed you have four options:
1 – Hit up the internet and find some easy recipes to make your own from scratch.
2 – Take a look at what DIY restaurant kits are available online like these examples.
3 – Order a Chinese feast in – Get on the Uber Eats, Deliveroo and Just Eats apps and order a Chinese takeaway in.
4 – Head to the local supermarket and see what Chinese feasts are available for you to cook at home.
Whatever you choose we know it’ll be amazing and don’t forget the fortune cookies!
How will you be celebrating Chinese New Year at The Hub? Let us know on our Facebook page.