According to legend, Chinese started celebrating New Year of the Dragon with the fight against a mythological beast called the Nian. As per tales this beast would come on the first day of New Year to eat villagers, especially children, crops and livestock. In order to protect themselves, villagers would put foodstuff in front of their main doors at the beginning of each year. After the Nian ate the food, it wouldn’t attack the villagers. Once villagers found out that Nian got scared away of a little child, who was wearing red. As a result of that the villagers started using red colour. For this reason, few days before every New Year the villagers would hang red spring scrolls and red lanterns on their doors and windows. Later Chinese people also started using firecrackers to scare away the Nian. From there onwards, Nian never returned to the village. Afterwards an ancient Taoist monk name Hongjun Laozu finally captured the Nian and the beast became his mount.
The main spot from where the Chinese begin their New Year celebrations is Trafalgar Square. Here different types of cultural stalls are set. In addition to this, traditional dances, amazing live performances and fireworks also take place. Then, at BFI Southbank four Chinese films are shown that put a light Chinese history and cultural. Rich Mix is another site where Chinese celebrate Dragons Year by putting up beautiful crafts, delicious food, top class musical performances and exciting lion dances. Entry to this site is free and open for all. National Maritime Museum also celebrates this event by organizing a day of music, special events and workshops for entire family. Chinese New Year at Ping Pong is an incredible time as the dim sum emporium and Chinese tea house celebrates the beginning. Rejoice Year of the Dragon at Shanghai Blues with a night-time of live entertainment. In addition to this several Chinese restaurants also celebrate this event, where people can visit and have fun.
Winters – January (every year this event is announced before December).
The Chinese New Year Celebrations in London last for 15 days.
Trafalgar Square, City of Westminster, WC2N 5DN, United Kingdom.
How to get there:
Charing Cross tube station is located 358 ft away from the famous Trafalgar Square, so participants and the visitors of Chinese New Year Celebrations can get there by taking a few steps after leaving this London Underground. View Map
Bus users should arrive at Trafalgar Square (Stop C), which is the nearest bus point to Trafalgar Square. The gap between the two sites is 190 ft, which can easily be covered on foot in about 49 seconds. Bus numbers 24, 29, 176, N5, N20, N29 and N41 can park at Trafalgar Square (Stop C).