China Love Date celebrates Red lantern festival also knows as Valentine’s Day in the western world falls on the 15th day of January, and this is when the first full moon appears and indicates a New year based on the traditional Lunar Chinese calendar. The Lantern festival is quite popular among the Western tourists that visit China. You can witness a beautiful display of lanterns and enjoy traditional famous food called Tangyuan.
The lantern festival dates back while ancient times and the lanterns at that time were very basic. Only important people like the emperor or noblemen had large and spectacular lanterns. Nowadays the lanterns are much more exotic and are embellished with fancy designs and colors. Many Chinese people believe that releasing the lanterns into the air will allow them to let go of the past. It is also a symbol of looking forward to the future.
Even today, when you visit China on the 15th day of the first lunar month, you will see thousands of red lanterns being displayed all over the country. Chengdu especially, which is situated in the southwest Sichuan province of China, holds a lantern festival each year in the Culture Park to celebrate this event. The park becomes an ocean of red lanterns and is an amazing sight to see. The most spectacular lantern shown during this festival is the dragon pole lantern which spirals up to a great height of 38 meters and spews a firework display from its mouth.
Another tradition of the lantern festival is trying to guess the riddles that are contained within the lanterns. The creators of the lanterns will write riddles on paper and place them inside the lanterns for others to find and read. If you manage to solve the riddles, you are then presented with a gift from the owner of the lantern.
The final tradition of the lantern festival is of course the food. Tangyuan is the famous traditional food served during the lantern festival. The food is shaped in a rice ball with many varied ingredients including fruits, meat and even nuts. It is believed to represent togetherness for the families and bring them happiness and good fortune during the forthcoming New Year.
Now of course we all know the lantern festival falls at the same time as our Valentine’s Day so there is one more very important point of the Chinese lantern festival, and that’s to symbolize love and to find your future partner. During the lantern festival, in the old days, young singles, chaperoned by their families, would trawl the streets in the hope to find happiness and love. Sadly this tradition has faded away and no longer happens.
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