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Festival and traditions: Chinese New Year (lunar) India and Indian

Updated on August 1, 2016

New year China at Paris

Chinese New Year, which took place in the 13th arrondissement of Paris, France Image 2
Chinese New Year, which took place in the 13th arrondissement of Paris, France Image 2 | Source

Chinese New year 2010

Chinese New Year or Spring Festival is the most important of the traditional Chinese holidays. The Chinese New Year is celebrated for about fifteen days. It is the time in the year when the whole nation feels united. The Chinese New Year is determined by the Chinese New Year calendar and it is generally called the Lunar New Year. 2010 is the Year of the Tiger in China. The year of the tiger is known in China by its formal name of Geng Yin.

India has a similar lunar calendar for its New Year. I will describe that in the next paragraph.

The Chinese Lunar Year Festival in 2010 would start from 14th of February. The working people in China can take leave of weeks to join the company of their family members and friends on the Chinese New Year eve. Most of the Chinese people still follow all the customs very fervently despite the changing times and increasing mobility and some changes in the celebrations of Chinese New Year Festival.

Chinese New Year is the longest and most important festivity in China. The Chinese New Year festival traditionally begins on the first day of the first month in the Chinese calendar and ends on the 15th. Chinese New Year Eve is known as chú xī that means "Year-pass Eve".

The origin of Chinese New Year eve has its root in centuries-old traditions and several myths make it significant. Chinese New Year eve has been reflecting behavior and belief of Chinese people since ancient times.

Chines New Year Dates 2013 - 2020

(click column header to sort results)
Chinese New Year date  
February 10
January 31
February 19
February 8
January 28
February 16
February 5
January 25
Table for Chinese New Year day and Gregorian calendar dates. Lunar and solar calendars are different and that causes different dates each year. However, Chinese New Year always fall between January 20 and February 20.

Chinese New Year in Paris

Chinese New Year, which took place in the 13th arrondissement of Paris, France
Chinese New Year, which took place in the 13th arrondissement of Paris, France | Source

Chinese years are named after Zodiac signs

Chinese lunar calendar has a time cycle of twelve years reflecting Chinese Zodiac signs Dog, Pig, Rooster, Dragon, Ox, Sheep, Horse, Rabbit, Snake, Monkey, Rat, and Tiger. Chinese Zodiac signs are different from western and Indian Zodiac signs. However, all systems have twelve Zodiac signs.

Chinese years are named after these twelve Zodiac signs.This year is marked as Tiger, the last one according to Chinese year cycle. This cycle can be compared with Indian lunar calendar which has thirty years cycle with different names of a year (Samvatsar).

Chinese years are often numbered from the reign of Huangdi outside China despite no continuously numbered years in the traditional Chinese calendar. However, scholars are not unanimous in calculating Chinese Year. There are at least three different opinions. The Chinese Year for 2010 is calculated as 4647, 4707 and 4708.

India has a similar tradition of Lunar New years. However, there are several New Years eve in India unlike only one in China. Chinese New year starts this year on the first day of the full moon fortnight in the month of Falguna or Fagun according to Indian lunar calendar.

View Indian New year

Happy Chinese New year !

Chinese New Year Eve outside China

Chinese New Year is considered a major holiday for the Chinese and has had an influence on the New Year celebrations of its geographic neighbors except India. It is celebrated in areas with large populations of ethnic Chinese and cultures having extensive interactions with Chinese such as Mongolians (Tsagaan Sar), Vietnamese (Tết), Koreans (Seollal), Tibetans and Bhutanese (Losar) and the Japanese (Oshogatsu) till the nineteenth century.

Chinese New Year is also celebrated in countries with significant Han Chinese populations, such as Singapore, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, and Thailand outside Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan.

Kolkata city in West Bengal has significant Chinese population in India. They also celebrate Chinese New year eve in their traditional way. Though Chinese New Year is not an official holiday In Australia, Canada and the United States, large numbers of ethnic Chinese hold large celebrations. Australia, Canada, and the US Postal Service issue postal stamps themed Chinese New Year.

Chinese New Year market

A scene in a street market in Chinatown, Singapore, during the Chinese New Year holidays
A scene in a street market in Chinatown, Singapore, during the Chinese New Year holidays | Source

Traditions and festivals of Chinese New Year

Regional customs and traditions concerning the celebration of the Chinese New Year vary widely within China. People buy presents, decoration materials, food, garments, and Jewelry just like the westerns do in Christmas and English New Year. Traditionally people thoroughly clean their houses to sweep away any ill-fortune.

They decorate windows and doors with couplets and paper-cuts of red color. These decorations have popular themes of wealth, happiness, and longevity. They do it in hopes for incoming good luck. It is very similar to Indians cleaning their houses and offices in Diwali to welcome fortune and wealth. It is worth noted that one of the Indian New year, Vir Samvat, starts from the next day of Diwali.

Supper is a feast with family and friends on the Eve of Chinese New Year. Food includes sweet delicacies. This ceremony occurs in Chinese families on the last night of the old year (as 31st December in western cultures). Usually, they end the night with firecrackers. (Firecrackers are an essential part of Diwali in India)

Children greet their parents by wishing them a healthy and happy New Year, the next morning. Married and elderly people gift them money in red paper envelopes. Red is considered very auspicious in China.

The Chinese New Year tradition is a great way to reconcile forgetting all grudges and sincerely wish peace and happiness for everyone. This can be compared with Kshamapana (Divine forgiveness) in Jain Paryushan and Kolakuli of Bengali people in India on Vijaya Dashami (Dushera).

Chinese New year Screening

India and China

show route and directions
A markerchina -
get directions

China is a country with age old civilization. Chinese New year is one of its kind festival.

B markerindia -
get directions

India is a great country who produced Lord Mahavira, Rama, Krishna and Buddha. It is rich in culture and progressing in high pace.

Chinese New year songs

Image: Hubmob Weekly topic

Chinese New year: Hubmob Weekly
Chinese New year: Hubmob Weekly


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    • JYOTI KOTHARI profile image

      Jyoti Kothari 8 years ago from Jaipur

      Hi HriY2k,

      Thanks for visiting the hub and commenting on it. Both China and India have influenced each other since centuries and millennium.

      Chinese travelers traveled through India and brought Indian religion to their country.

      Jyoti Kothari

    • profile image

      hriy2k 8 years ago

      i am very glad to see the cultural similarities between india&chinese festival.for a long time many visitors came india &gave us their cultural fever.

    • JYOTI KOTHARI profile image

      Jyoti Kothari 8 years ago from Jaipur

      Hi HP,

      I have written about Chinese travelers traveled India in ancient times. Actually they brought Buddhism to China.

      However, I do not agree that Buddhism is an offsuit of Hinduism. I consider it as a separate non-Vedic religion.

      Thanks for visiting the hub and comments.

      Jyoti Kothari

    • H P Roychoudhury profile image

      H P Roychoudhury 8 years ago from Guwahati, India

      It is a very nice hub that has shown rightly the similarity between the two big countries of Asia since the ancient times. You have described very nicely the similarity of the New Year’s festival of the two countries but you have not mentioned the religious similarity. The religion Buddhism was originated in India and it is considered by the religious stalwarts that Buddhism is nothing but an offshoot of Hinduism. Thanks for sharing the nice article.

    • JYOTI KOTHARI profile image

      Jyoti Kothari 8 years ago from Jaipur

      Hi Misha,

      Thanks for visiting this hub and commenting on it. Both China and India are ancient civilizations and lot of things are shared in the past.

      Jyoti Kothari

    • profile image

      Misha 8 years ago

      Hi, thanks for posting this. I am chinese and delighted to know you have created this page. Both cultures are very similar, not just on calendars/new years, but also in terms of family values, traditions, beliefs and other festivals. I was in India only a month ago and enjoyed the hospitality and warmth of its people and learnt much about Indian culture as well.

    • JYOTI KOTHARI profile image

      Jyoti Kothari 8 years ago from Jaipur

      Hi Patty,

      Thanks for visiting this hub and encouraging me. Hubpages has brought writers of many countries together.


      Jyoti Kothari

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 8 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      It is interesting to hear about all of these several countries and their customs. The videos add a lot of flavor to the writing as well. Thank you for sharing all this!

    • JYOTI KOTHARI profile image

      Jyoti Kothari 8 years ago from Jaipur

      Hi Pretty,

      Thanks for visiting and commenting on this hub. Both India and China are ancient civilizations. Large numbers of Chinese visitors such as Fa-Hien and Hue-en-sang visited India in ancient times. They learned Indian religions and brought to China.

      Jyoti Kothari

    • prettydarkhorse profile image

      prettydarkhorse 8 years ago from US

      nice one Jyothi, I agree there are similarities to Indian culture, Thank you for this one, Maita