(Chinese New Year)
1st day of the 1st lunar month, which falls on January 24 in
All over China
Spring Festival originated in the sacrificial ceremony held
shortly after the winter solstice during the early Xia Dynasty
(21st-16th century BC), when China was still in the primitive society.
The ritual was designed to repay the blessings of the god and celebrate
bumper harvests. Today, it has become the foremost of all traditional
festivals for the Chinese people.
before the festival sets
people are already busy grocery shopping, making new clothes, paying
tribute to the Kitchen God and ancestors, preparing the family reunion
banquet, pasting New Year couplets on gateposts or door panels, and
pinning up New Year paintings on walls. During the festival, they visit
each other and exchange New Year’s greetings. Firecrackers are let off
to liven up the atmosphere. A lot of dining and wining takes place
during the festival, and every family make and eat New Year’s cakes
(made of glutinous rice flour), dumplings and sweet dumplings. There are
dragon, lion, and yangge dances and lantern shows in both urban and
rural areas, as merry-makers bid farewell to old year and wish for a
good beginning in the new year, exorcise evil spirits and pestilence,
and pray for good harvests and good luck in the new year.
During Spring Festival, many families decorate the window panes of their
houses with pleasant-looking papercuts portraying Chinese opera
characters, flowers, birds, insects and fish.
Couplets: New Year couplets, written on strips of red paper, are a major
part of the Chinese Spring Festival custom. On the lunar New Year’s Eve,
families in urban and rural areas alike make it a point
grace their gate posts or door panels with couplets composed of two
sentences which match each other in sound and sense to express their
Paintings: New Year’s paintings are a branch of Chinese folk art which
draws inspirations from such things as bumper harvests, prosperity,
landscape, flowers and birds, buffaloes, and babies. During the
festival, the Chinese love to pin up a few New Year’s paintings on their
living room walls to bid farewell to the old year and greet the new.
Jiaozi, or dumplings, is a typical Chinese food. It is the habit of
people living in north China to celebrate festivals by making and eating
dumplings. On New Year’s Eve entire families would gather to chat while
preparing dumplings. Afterwards they would stay up late or all night to
see the old year out and the New Year in.
15th day of the 1st lunar month, which falls on February 19 in
2000, February 7 in 2001.
All over China.
The Lantern Festival has its origin in the Han Dynasty. King Wen of the
Western Han Dynasty officially designated the 15th day of the 1st lunar
month as Lantern Festival, and during the reign of King Wu of the Han
Dynasty, the Chinese began to celebrate this festival
lantern shows. During the Yongping reign of the Eastern Han Dynasty,
King Ming, in an effort to promote Buddhism, ordered that lanterns be
lit up in palaces and monasteries at night as tribute to the Buddha.
Aristocrats and commoners alike were asked to hang lanterns at the front
gates of their houses. Hence the name, Lantern Festival. The practice
gradually became part of the Chinese folklore and is celebrated in pomp
and pageantry. During the Song Dynasty, “yuan xiao”, a kind of dumplings
made of glutinous rice flour and sweet stuffing, were invented.
boiled in water until they float. They
made exclusively in celebration of the Lantern Festival, which is also
called “Yuanxiao Festival”.
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Zigong Lantern Show
– Early March
Zigong, Sichuan Province.
As early as the Tang Dynasty, the people of Zigong were already
putting on lantern displays during Spring Festival. The custom remains
alive and kicking till
this day. The municipal government of Zigong makes it a point to sponsor
a traditional lantern show every year during the Spring Festival.
On: During the show, a “dragon” pieced together with porcelain
dinner-sets, and a “peacock” fashioned out of glass drug bottles strung
together, are displayed along with thousands of lanterns. The lanterns,
which as a rule are marked by superb craftsmanship, are woven of thin
bamboo strips and covered with colorful silk fabrics or paper; they are
grouped into several hundred clusters to form a spectacular show of
forms, colors, lights, movements and sounds. During the show commodities
fairs and business talks are also held.
Qintong Boat Festival in Yangzhou
April 4-6 every year.
Qintong Town, Yangzhou, Jiangsu Province.
On: This is a typical folklore activity. During the festival boats
from nearby fishing villages converge at Qintong Town for a few days of
rejoicing. Theatrical performances, dragon and lion dances, and other
folk dances are staged right on board the boats. Boat races are also
part of the festivity.
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Spring Flower Fair
28th-30th of the 12th lunar month, which falls
on February 2-4 in 2000.
Guangzhou, Guangdong Province
During the Qianlong and Jiaqing reigns of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911),
tea sales flourished, and the demand for flowers as ingredients for the
making of flower tea snowballed, thereby providing a great impetus to
flower cultivation in China. During the Xianfeng and Tongzhi reigns,
flower fairs emerged in some cities.
During the fairs the streets were lined with booths selling such
flowers as water lily and lilac, which bloom in summer; osmanthus and
nandina which come out in autumn and red maple; and magnolia and winter
jasmine which come into full glory in late winter. Today, all these
flowers can be seen at the Guangzhou Spring Flower Fair, which takes
place on New Year’s Eve. For Guangzhou residents the Flower Fair is part
of Spring Festival celebrations.
On: Prior to the Spring Festival, farmers ship flowers into the city
from suburbs, and lay them out in a number of streets. During the
festival, local residents, old and young, take to the streets to see the
flowers. When they return home they bring some of the flowers to
decorate their houses. A journey down the flower-bedecked streets is
like homecoming to nature.
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Water Splashing Festival
April 13-15 every year.
Jinghong, Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture, Yunnan
Legend has it that there once lived a demon king who was wreaking
havoc in Xishuangbanna by taking seven young women as his wives against
their will. The women finally rose in rebellion and killed the demon
king, thereby ridding the area of a scourge. However, the chopped head
of the demon king kept rolling, causing fire in its trail, and the fire
could be put out only when one of the women held it in her arms. Thus
the seven women took turns holding the demon head once a year. When one
woman’s turn was over, the local people would splash water on her, so as
to rinse her of the blood and expel the evil spirits out of her; the
gesture was also an expression of gratitude for the women for keeping
the local people from harm’s way. With the passing of time, the demon
king’s head was finally burned to ashes. Splashing water on each other,
however, has gradually evolved into part of local custom.
On: Dragon boat
races, the firing of indigenous missiles, dances to the accompaniment of
the beating of drums on a pedestal shaped like an elephant’s legs,
peacock dances, sightseeing, country fairs, and water-splashing
festivities. During the festival pouches are tossed between unmarried
men and women as tokens of love.
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Hainan Int’l Coconut Festival
3rd day of 3rd lunar month each year.
Hainan Province: Haikou, Wenchang County, Tongshi, and Sanya.
The coconut tree is the emblem of the Hainan Island, known also
as “Coconut Island.”
On April 3-8, 1992, the provincial government held the first Hainan
International Coconut Festival to show what was being done in Hainan as
a special economic zone. Since then the International Coconut Festival
has become an annual event, during which time the island province’s
coconut-associated cultural heritage and ethnic habits and customs are
displayed. Business talks are also held during the festival.
On: Lantern display in
the Coconut City, the Coconut Street, gala celebrations among ethnic Li
and Miao people, international dragon boat racing, ethnic martial
contest, variety shows, weddings in Li and Miao traditions, and
sacrifices to ancestors.
Luoyang Peony Festival
April 15-25 every year.
Luoyang, Henan Province
“The peony of Luoyang is the most beautiful under heaven”, as the
saying goes. The peony, the emblem flower of Luoyang, is lauded as
“queen of flowers with ethereal color and celestial fragrance.”
Since the Tang Dynasty no Chinese city has been able to rival Luoyang in
growing peonies. Growing the peony and marveling at it has, in fact,
long been a local obsession. Of the 500,000 peony shrubs in 350-odd
strains that are cultivated in Luoyang, the yaohuang (Yao’s yellow
peony) and weizi (Wei’s purple peony) are the “king” and “queen” of all
peonies. The first Luoyang Peony Festival took place on April 15-25 in
1983; since then it has become a major annual event.
On: Full-length variety
shows, flower watching, lantern show, exhibitions of traditional Chinese
calligraphy and painting and photography, symposiums, and business
talks. At the Wangcheng Park and the Botanical Garden, banquets are
arranged for peony admirers, and all kinds of snacks and refreshments
are served as well.
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April 25 and October 4 every year.
Meizhou Island in Putian, Fujian Province
Mazu was born Lin Muniang in 960 AD, or, to be exact, the 23rd of
the 3rd lunar month of the 1st year of the Jianlong reign of the Song
Dynasty, and died on the 9th day of the 9th lunar month at the age of
28. As a philanthropist she offered medical service for fellow
islanders, and with her weather forecasting ability she saved many
fishermen from the menace of typhoons. Touched by her good and moral
deeds, the local people deified her as Angel of the Sea and Holy Mother
who could bring blessings to them. A temple was built and dedicated to
her memory on the Meizhou Island, so that islanders could offer
sacrifices to her.
On: The 23rd day of the
3rd lunar month is the birthday of Goddess Mazu, and the 9th day of the
9th lunar month her death anniversary. On both dates the Temple of Mazu
is thronged with thousands of pilgrims, many of them from Taiwan, who
come to pay homage to the goddess.
Weifang Int’l Kite Festival
April 20-25 every year
Weifang, Shandong Province
With a kite-making history of 600 years, Weifang is known
throughout the world as one of China’s three major kite-making schools
along with Beijing and Tianjin. Unmatched artisanship and diverse
subject matter that draws heavily from local folk life characterize
Weifang Kite. Since 1984 Weifang has been the site of an annual
international kite festival, which attracts numerous visitors from every
nook and cranny of the world. During the fanfare the sky of the city is
swarmed with kites ingeniously designed and colorfully decorated. This
is perhaps one of the reasons why Weifang has been lauded by kite fans
as “capital of the world of kites.”
The International Kites Federation is headquartered in Weifang.
On: The opening
ceremony at which the first batch of kites will take off, international
and domestic kite competitions, selection of the ten best kites, visit
to a kite museum, folk art performances at Yangjiabu, and
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Dragon Boat Festival
5th day of the 5th lunar month
All over Chin
During the Warring States Period (475-221 BC), Qu Yuan, a
patriotic poet of the state of Chu, was removed from office and sent
into exile by the duke of Chu. In sorrow, Qu took a stone in his embrace
and drowned himself in the Miluo River on the 5th day of the 5th lunar
month. The local people wrapped glutinous rice in mugwort leaves and
threw it into the river to lure the shrimps, fish and crabs away from
the remains of the deceased poet. With the passing of time the practice
of throwing rice into the river as a sacrifice to Qu Yuan gradually
evolved into a custom.
On: To show their
respect for the great patriotic poet, the Chinese make it a point to
mark the anniversary of his death by eat
ing zongzi, a pyramid-shaped dumpling made of glutinous rice wrapped in
bamboo or reed leaves, and holding dragon boat races. Tourist activities
are organized in various parts of the country, but the celebrations in
the city of Miluo are most fascinating. The International Dragon Boat
Festival held in June 10-14 annually in Yueyang, Hunan Province, is
perhaps the most famous known in China. More than 20 dragon boat teams
from the United States, Canada, Australia, and countries and regions in
Southeast Asia attend the racing and demonstration shows every year.
Guizhou Azalea Festival
Baihuaping in Bijie Prefecture’s Aianxi County
A vast stretch of azaleas is found where Qianxi and Dafang
counties in Guizhou Province’s Bijie Prefecture share the same boundary.
The flowers in the Pudi Azalea Zone of Dafang County and the Jinpo
Azalea Zone of Qianxi County are the most famous. There the azalea
begins to bloom in March, reaches its full glory in April, and continues
into May, so that for three months a year, the heavily wooded place is
taken over by a riot of color and becomes a veritable natural flower
garden rarely seen anywhere in this world. The Azalea Festival, which
was first started in 1993, is an annual event in Guizhou.
On: The opening
ceremony, folk art performances by the ethnic Yi, Miao and Buyi people,
a lantern show in Qianxi County, bell-ringing dances, dances to the
accompaniment of reed pipes, and bull and chicken fights. Tourists are
welcome to attend carnivals by a bonfire and tempt their palate with
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Qinghai Folk Song Festival
8th day of the 4th lunar month, 6th day of the 6th lunar month,
and 15th of the 7th lunar month.
Hua’er refers to folk songs popular among the ethnic Hui,
Dongxiang and Baoan peoples in Qinghai Province. Love is a major theme
of such songs, which are characterized by sweet, soul-stirring tunes,
rich and varied motifs, and an unmistakable idyllic flavor. After the
5th month according to the Chinese lunar calendar, “hua’er” festivals
are held in many places in Qinghai, and local singers take this
opportunity to sing their life, labor, love and ideals in a most
infatuating way. The folk song festival, which takes place on the 6th
day of the 6th lunar month at Lianhuashan, Xining, is so famous that it
eventually became an annual weeklong event.
On: During the
festival, tens of thousands of Hui, Dongxiang and Baoan folk singers and
onlookers gather at Lianhuashan for round after round of singing. Other
activities include mountaineering, theatrical performances, trade fairs,
and the farewell ceremony.
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Wutai Mountain Tourist Month
July 25-August 25 every year
Taihuai Town, Wutai County, Shanxi Province
Since ancient times, the Wutai Mountain has been a site of temple
fairs. With the passing of time, these temple fairs have gradually
evolved into the Wutai Mountain International Tourist Month, which
sets the stage for displaying the Wutai Mountain as one of China’s
four major Buddhist mountain sanctuaries and its wealth of ancient
sites and cultural artifacts.
Buddhist ritualistic ceremonies, folk art activities, and a large mule
and horse fair. During the month, the entire mountain is enshrouded in
the mystery of a religious atmosphere, as monks from all over the
country gather at Taihuai Town performing Buddhist rites to save the
souls of the dead and chanting Buddhist sutras. The event gives the
traveler an excellent opportunity to visit the architecture of the
cluster of temples and monasteries on the Wutai Mountain, and learn
something about local habits and customs.
Nadam Tourist Festival
Around July 15 every year
Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region
In Mongolian the word “nadam” means “amusement and entertainment.”
The Nadam Festival is a traditional occasion for Mongols to get
together for a few days of festivity. In the past, herdsmen in the
region gathered in summer to sacrifice to celestial beings and amuse
themselves in celebration of a thriving animal husbandry. Later, the
Nadam Festival has become a ten-day event at the banner or sumu
level during the summer-autumn interregnum. Now the festival has
acquired a new name, “Nadam Grassland Tourist Festival”.
Horse racing, archery, and wrestling; the Mani Festival,
Yuan-dynasty imperial banquets, wedding in the ethnic Erdos style,
sacrificial rituals at Genghis Khan’s mausoleum, tours of the Hot
Spring Forest, Mongolian folklore show; and business activities.
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Yunnan Yi Torch Festival
The 24th –26th days of the 6th lunar month.
Shucun Town of the Lunan Yi Autonomous County, and the city of
Chuxiong in the Chuxiong Yi Autonomous Prefecture, Yunnan Province
According to a legend among the Yi people in Lunan,
once upon a time there lived a demon king who terrorized
the local people. During an uprising the local people bound torches
to the horns and hind legs of a herd of goats and eliminated the
demon king by lighting the torches and driving the goats into its
lair. On the 24th day of the 6th lunar month the local people lit
torches for an entire night’s merry-making in celebration of the
Archery, horse racing, bull fights, and wrestling.
Torch-holding dances around a bonfire
Qingdao Int’l Beer Festival
Mid-August every year.
Qingdao, Shandong Province
The Qingdao beer is renowned all over the world. The Qingdao
International Beer Festival
and has since become an annual event, which takes place at the
Qingdao Tourist Resort.
Full-length variety shows, parades of artistic floats, fashion
shows, fireworks display at the beach, sports competitions, a
symposium on beer-making technology, and business talks.
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Shoton Festival in Tibet
August (From the end of the 6th month to the beginning of the 8th
month according to the Tibetan calendar).
Lhasa, Tibet Autonomous Region
In the Tibetan language the word “shoton”
The Shoton Festival has its beginning prior to the 17th century. By
Buddhist discipline, monks are confined in their monasteries for several
dozen days until summer is over. The day the “confinement” is over the
local people treat the monks to banquets, at which yogurt is served
“Sunning the Buddha” (giant tangkha-portraits of the Buddha are
brought out of the monasteries and unfolded in the sun for public
display), Tibetan opera performances, and trade fairs.
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Xinjiang Grape Festival
April 20-26 every year
Turpan, Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region
Grape cultivation in the world-famous city of Turpan dates back
to more than
years ago. Of the 100-odd grain strains in Turpan, the
white grapes, dubbed “green pearls of China,”
are the most precious. The raisin and wine produced in Turpan are known
for their lingering good tastes. Most of Turpan’s grapes are grown in
the renowned Grape Valley, or “Pearl City in the Desert.”
The Xinjiang Grape Festival was first launched in 1990 and has since
become an annual event in Turpan.
Wedding in the Uygur style, mashlap (lively and humorous folk
dance), nazkum (witty art performance), Koco-style songs and dances,
Hami-melon competition, trade negotiations, tour of the Street of
Grapes and Melons, and camel caravans reminiscent of the Silk Road
more than 2,000 years ago.
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Shaolin Int’l Martial Arts Festival
September 10-15 every year
Zhengzhou, Henan Province
The worldwide fame of the 1,500-year-old Shaolin Temple is
attributed to its consummate martial arts dating back more than a
thousand years to the Tang Dynasty. During the Five Dynasties (907-960
AD), monks in the temple had already devised more than 100 styles of
boxing. By the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) the Shaolin martial arts reached
its zenith. The city of Dengfeng, where the temple is situated, has
become a center of martial arts. In 1991 the first Zhengzhou
International Martial Arts Festival was held to carry forward the
heritage of Chinese martial arts and promote local tourist and economic
development. The Festival is held once a year.
On: A good variety of
Shaolin martial arts performances and contests, and exchanges between
martial arts from around the world. A cruise on the Yellow River gives
some idea about the landscape and folklore along this mighty river.
Dalian Int’l Fashion Festival
Early September every year
Dalian, Liaoning Province
The first Dalian Fashion Show was held in 1988. Renamed Dalian
International Fashion Festival in 1991, it is a showcase of the latest
developments in world fashion, presented by companies from various
countries and regions. The general tendency for east and west to mingle
offers a new impetus for the prosperity of fashion designs and the
garment-making industry, and provides an entirely new aesthetic
experience for mankind.
Large-scale variety shows in the open, an international garment
exhibition, negotiations on the export of Chinese garments, a grand
competition of up-and-coming Chinese fashion designers, and parades
and performances of models.
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Zhangjiajie Int’l Forest Festival
Two or three days beginning from September 18 each year.
Zhangjiajie, Hunan Province.
Zhangjiajie with its unmatched natural beauty is China’s first
state forest reserve. The Wulingyuan district in the reserve is of
superb scientific and aesthetic value, where there are bounteous scenic
spots, the ecology is well protected, and the forms of 3,103 quartzite
pillars shimmering in an ocean of shifting mists. With a 97 percent
forest cover, Zhangjiajie is home to a good variety of rare and precious
Tour of forests, geological study tour, rafting the Maoyan River,
international mountaineering invitational tournament, cliff mounting
competitions, as well as art performances, qigong shows and cliff
climbing stunts by local Tujia villagers.
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Qufu Int’l Confucian Festival
September 26-October 10 every year.
Qufu, Shangdong Province.
Confucius, a celebrated thinker and educator, was born on the
27th day of the 8th lunar month (towards the end of September in 551 BC
in Qufu. Since ancient times, the anniversary of his birth has been
marked in Qufu
in the pomp and pageantry of sacrificial rituals. Since 1984 the
local tourist authorities have launched a tour of the native place of
on his birthday, to the delight of travelers from at home and abroad. In
1989, the program was renamed International Confucian Festival.
On: A grand ceremony
to offer libation and sacrifices to Confucius, performances of music and
dance in tribute to Confucius, exhibition on the life and
accomplishments of Confucius, calligraphic show, the Confucian mansion,
temple and forest (graveyard), Nishan (where the sage was born), and
thematic tours designed to acquaint visitors with Confucius’ academic
activities, the wedding customs in his hometown and the cuisine of his
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15th day of the 8th lunar month
All over China
During the Zhou Dynasty (16th-11th centuries BC), the night of
the full moon was an occasion for the Chinese to hold rituals to greet
the cool weather and sacrifice to the Goddess of the Moon. By the Tang
Dynasty (618-907) moon-watching and merry-making had become part of the
ritual. During the Northern Song (960-1127), the 15th day of the 8th
lunar month was designated as Mid-Autumn Festival. When night falls, the
orb of the moon hangs full in the firmament, shedding a flood of silvery
light over the land, while family members in China gather for the
happiness of reunion, munching moon cakes and marveling at the chastened
glory of the Goddess of the Moon. By Chinese custom the 15th day of the
8th lunar month is a day for family reunion as symbolized by the full
moon and the moon cake.
On: Ceremonies to
make libation and sacrifices to the moon, and watching the moon while
enjoying moon cakes. There is always something dream-like and romantic
about Mid-Autumn Festival, on account of its close association with such
Chinese fables as Chang’e fleeing to the moon, the man Wu Gang
performing the unending servitude to cutting an osmanthus tree, and the
Jade Rabbit pounding medicinal herbs with a pestle. For men of letters
the festival is an occasion to get together, improvise poems over a cup
of wine and recite them to each other.
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October every year.
Huangshan, Anhui Province.
The first Huangshan International Tourist Festival took place
on October 25-30, 1991, and was attended by 103 tour operators and
representative of travel services of the United States, Japan,
Thailand, France, Germany, Singapore and other countries. A total of
500,000 people took part in the activities organized during the
festival. The success of the festival not only won the heart of
travelers from at home and abroad, but also expanded the worldwide
reputation of Mount Huangshan and promoted local tourism. The local
authorities, therefore, have designated it as an
Traditional lantern shows,
folklore performances, tour of Mount Huangshan and ancient
structures in Huizhou, tourist business talks, negotiations on
attracting foreign investment, and commodity fairs.
Chang’an Calligraphic Conference
November every year.
Xi’an, Shaanxi Province.
The annual Chang’an International Calligraphic Conference is an
important national tourist program. For Shaanxi Province, it is also a
large-scale activity involving foreign visitors.
Since its inception, the conference has attracted calligraphers,
calligraphic fans and tourists
from all over the world. The conference is
designed to publicize the image of Shaanxi Province and promote
On: The grand opening
ceremony, inscribing a
100-meter-long scroll, meetings of famous calligraphers from
China and the rest of the world, calligraphy exhibition, auctions of
works of calligraphy and paintings by famous Chinese
Each conference attracts nearly 1,000 calligraphers
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Jingdezhen Int’l Ceramics Festival
October 11-14 every year.
Jingdezhen, Jiangxi Province.
A millennium in the making of porcelain ware has earned
Jingdezhen the name “Capital of Porcelain.”
Elegant ornamentation, jade-like textures, and translucent walls
– these are reasons behind the superlative quality of porcelain
products that bear the name Jingdezhen. The Jingdezhen International
Ceramics Festival is organized to disseminate the Chinese ceramics
technology and promote international exchange in ceramics.
On: A grand
international ceramics show, an exhibition of Jingdezhen porcelain
products from the Tang Dynasty to the Qing Dynasty, an exhibition of
ceramic works by famous contemporary artists, porcelain making
demonstrations, tea ceremonies, international ceramics symposium,
business activities, etc. There are also tours of the city’s ceramics
industry, including porcelain-making technology of the Ming and Qing
dynasties, and ruins of ancient kilns, and ceramics study tours.
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Harbin Ice and Snow Festival
January 5-February 5 every year.
Harbin, Heilongjiang Province.
With 190-day freezing season, the northeastern city of Harbin is
known as a “City of Ice” and a cradle of the ice-and-snow culture in the
world. The long and frigid winter, and the high plasticity and hardness
of ice blocks quarried from the Songhua River, furnish favorable
conditions for ice and snow sculpture. On January 5, 1985, the first
Harbin Ice and Snow Festival was unveiled.
Since then it has become an annual event,
which is highly acclaimed around the world. Harbin was also the venue of
the Third Asian Winter Sports Tournament.
On: Ice lantern show,
snow sculpture display, and international ice and snow sculpture
competitions; winter swimming, ice hockey, speed-skating, alpine skiing,
and cross-country skiing competitions; and ice and snow film festival
exhibitions of paintings, calligraphy and photograph, folklore shows,
ethnic song and dance parties, weddings on an ice-covered river. A
participation in the ice-snow festival can be compared to a visit to a
fairyland of crystal palace.
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The Corban Festival
The 10th day of the month of Dul Hajah (the 12th month on the
with large Hui, Uygur and Kazakh
According to Arabic legend, Ibrahim was a pious follower of
Allah. Once, in a dream, Ibrahim got Allah’s divine message for him to
slaughter his own son as a sacrifice. When he was about to carry out the
order, a messenger sent by Allah descended with a goat, and asked
Ibrahim to sacrifice the goat instead of his own son. Since then the
the day by slaughtering goats for the sake of safety. This gradually
evolved into the Corban, a festival for slaughter goats.
During the festival the Muslims gather in the mosque for prayers and
a ceremony to slaughter the animals. Then families begin to
celebrate by slaughtering cattle, goats and camels and treating
friends with the meat, and the dinner table is enshrouded in a
fraternal atmosphere. In Xinjiang, the various ethnic minorities
celebrate the Corban by singing and dancing, and taking part in such
games as scrambling for a goat, horse racing, and young women
chasing after men for love and fun.
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