Things to Do in Singapore Chinese New Year

Welcome to the exciting world of Chinese New Year celebrations in Singapore! With its vibrant culture and rich heritage, Singapore is the perfect place to ring in the Year of the Water Rabbit in 2023. From festive decorations and light-ups to celebratory events and performances, there is no shortage of things to do during this auspicious occasion.

The significance of Chinese New Year in Singapore cannot be overstated. It is a time for family reunions, feasting, and paying respects to ancestors. The streets are adorned with red lanterns and banners, and the air is filled with lion dances and firecrackers. Whether you are a local or a visitor, the festive spirit is infectious and will leave you with memories to last a lifetime.

As you explore Singapore during Chinese New Year, you will be delighted by the array of cultural exhibitions and tours, shopping and gifting opportunities, and mouth-watering festive foods and dining options. With so much to see and do, it can be overwhelming to plan your itinerary. But fear not; we have compiled a list of the top things to do during the Chinese New Year in Singapore to help you make the most of this joyous occasion.

Key Takeaways

  • Chinese New Year is a significant festival in Singapore that celebrates family, heritage, and good fortune.
  • During Chinese New Year, Singapore is transformed into a festive wonderland with colourful decorations, lively performances, and delicious food.
  • From cultural exhibitions and shopping to dining and traditions, plenty of things to do during the Chinese New Year in Singapore will leave you with unforgettable memories.

Significance of Chinese New Year in Singapore

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Chinese New Year is a significant Singapore festival celebrated enthusiastically and enthusiastically. The festival is deeply rooted in Chinese culture and heritage, and it is a time for families to come together and celebrate.

Spring Festival

The festival is also known as the Spring Festival or Lunar New Year, and it is celebrated on the first day of the lunar calendar. The festival lasts 15 days and is marked by various traditions and customs.

Red

Red is a significant colour during Chinese New Year, which is believed to bring good luck and prosperity. You will notice that many decorations, clothing, and gifts are in red during this period.

Gifts

Chinese New Year is also a time for giving and receiving gifts. It is customary to exchange red packets filled with money, which is believed to bring good luck and fortune. The amount of money given is usually an even number, as odd numbers are considered unlucky.

Tradition

One of the most important traditions during Chinese New Year is the reunion dinner. Families gather on the eve of Chinese New Year to feast together and pay respect to their ancestors. The ancestors are believed to bless the family with good luck and prosperity for the coming year.

Festive

In Singapore, Chinese New Year is celebrated with various events and activities. The Chinatown is a festive wonderland with colourful decorations and street performances. You can also visit the Chinese New Year bazaar to sample traditional food and buy festive goodies.

Chinese New Year is a time for celebration, family, and traditions. It is a significant festival in Singapore, and you will feel the excitement and joy in the air during this period.

Festive Decorations and Light-Ups in Singapore Chinese New Year

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If you’re looking for a way to immerse yourself in the Chinese New Year spirit, you won’t miss out on the stunning festive decorations and light-ups Singapore offers. Here are some of the top places to visit during this festive season:

Chinatown Light-Up

Chinatown is the place to be during Chinese New Year, and the annual light-up is a must-see. This year, the light-up features colourful rabbit-themed lanterns, replacing the tiger decorations of yesteryear. The festive lights adorn Upper Cross Street for the first time, joining the returning light-up of New Bridge Road, Eu Tong Sen Street and South Bridge Road.

The streets are transformed into a vibrant wonderland of lanterns, with different areas featuring unique themes. You’ll see everything from giant rabbits to cherry blossom trees and red packets.

Gardens by the Bay Dahlia Dreams

Gardens by the Bay is always a popular spot to visit, and it’s even more special during Chinese New Year. The Dahlia Dreams floral display at the Flower Dome is a sight to behold, with over 1,000 dahlias of various shapes and sizes on display.

This year’s display theme is “Together”, symbolising the coming together of friends and family during this festive season. The Flower Dome is adorned with lanterns and decorations, making it the perfect place to soak in the Chinese New Year atmosphere.

Trail of Fortune

The Trail of Fortune is a unique way to experience Singapore’s Chinese New Year festivities. This year, the trail features the (Tu)Gether Art Installation, a stunning display of over 2000 lanterns in the shape of rabbits. The course takes you through the Marina Bay area, with different installations and activities. You’ll have the chance to make your lantern, try your hand at calligraphy and even participate in a traditional lion dance.

Whether you’re a local or a tourist, the festive decorations and light-ups in Singapore during Chinese New Year are not to be missed. So grab your camera, gather your loved ones, and immerse yourself in the vibrant and exciting atmosphere of this particular time of year.

Celebratory Events and Performances in Singapore Chinese New Year

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Chinese New Year is a time of celebration and joy; Singapore is no exception. The city-state is known for its vibrant and colourful festivities during this time of the year, with many events and performances that will delight visitors and locals alike. Here are some top events and concerts you can look forward to during the Lunar New Year in Singapore.

River Hongbao

The River Hongbao is one of the most popular events during Chinese New Year in Singapore. Held at the Marina Bay Floating Platform, this event celebrates Chinese culture and traditions. You can expect stunning lantern displays, intricate paper cuttings, and colourful performances. The nightly fireworks display highlights the event, leaving you in awe.

Chingay Parade

The Chingay Parade is another must-see event during Chinese New Year in Singapore. This parade celebrates Singapore’s multiculturalism, with performances from various ethnic groups. You can expect colourful floats, elaborate costumes, and lively music. The parade culminates in a spectacular fireworks display that lights up the night sky.

Underwater Dragon Dance at SEA Aquarium

For a unique Chinese New Year experience, head to the SEA Aquarium at Resorts World Sentosa. Here, you can witness an underwater dragon dance, where divers perform a traditional dragon dance surrounded by marine life. It’s a one-of-a-kind experience that you won’t find anywhere else.

Universal Studios Singapore Festivities

Universal Studios Singapore is another great place to celebrate Chinese New Year in Singapore. The theme park is decked out in festive decorations, and you can expect to see special performances and stage shows. There’s also a New Year’s Eve countdown party with parades, lion dances, and fireworks.

With so many events and performances to choose from, you’re sure to have an exciting and memorable Chinese New Year in Singapore. Don’t forget to check out other events, such as the Museum Roundtable Lunar New Year Hongbao Campaign and the Light to Night Festival 2023, which are also worth a visit.

Festive Foods and Dining in Singapore Chinese New Year

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Chinese New Year is all about food and family. From the Reunion Dinner to Lo Hei and Food Fairs, there are plenty of opportunities to indulge in delicious traditional Chinese New Year dishes with your loved ones.

Reunion Dinner

The Reunion Dinner is the most important meal of the Chinese New Year celebrations. It is a time for family members to come together and enjoy a feast. The dinner usually takes place on New Year’s Eve and is a time for family members to catch up and bond over delicious food.

Some popular dishes served during the Reunion Dinner include fish, dumplings, and hot pot. Fish symbolises prosperity, while dumplings represent wealth and good fortune. A hot pot is a communal dish where everyone cooks their food in boiling broth.

Lo Hei

Lo Hei is a traditional Chinese New Year dish that must be tried during the festive season. It is a salad with various ingredients, including raw fish, shredded vegetables, and a sweet and sour sauce. The dish is usually served during the seventh day of the Chinese New Year celebrations, also known as Renri.

The dish is served with chopsticks, and everyone at the table tosses the ingredients together while shouting auspicious phrases. The higher you toss the salad, the better your luck for the coming year.

Food Fair

Suppose you want to indulge in traditional Chinese New Year snacks and treats; head to one of the many food fairs during the festive season. These fairs are a great place to sample a variety of goodies, including pineapple tarts and bak kwa.

Pineapple tarts are a popular Chinese New Year snack symbolising good luck and prosperity. The sweet and buttery pastry is filled with a pineapple jam filling. Bak kwa, on the other hand, is a sweet and salty dried meat that is a favourite among many Singaporeans.

Many restaurants also offer special Chinese New Year menus during the festive season, so check out what’s available. With so many delicious dishes to try, you’ll be spoiled for choice.

Cultural Exhibitions and Tours in Singapore Chinese New Year

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If you want to immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of Singapore during Chinese New Year, there are several exhibitions and tours that you can explore. Here are some of the top options:

Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall

The Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall is a museum dedicated to the life and legacy of Dr Sun Yat Sen, the founding father of modern China. During Chinese New Year, the museum hosts a range of activities and exhibitions that showcase Chinese culture and traditions. You can participate in calligraphy workshops, watch lion dance performances, and explore the museum’s collection of artefacts and documents related to Dr Sun Yat Sen’s life.

Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre

The Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre is a hub for Chinese arts and culture in Singapore. During Chinese New Year, the centre hosts various events and exhibitions celebrating the festival. You can explore the centre’s rooftop garden, which features a stunning display of lanterns and decorations, or participate in cultural workshops and performances. The centre also hosts various exhibitions showcasing Chinese art, music, and theatre.

The Istana Open House

The Istana is the official residence of the President of Singapore. During Chinese New Year, the Istana opens its doors to the public for a special open house event. You can explore the Istana’s beautiful gardens and buildings and participate in various activities and performances celebrating Singapore’s cultural diversity. The Istana Open House is a great way to learn more about Singapore’s history and culture and to experience the festive spirit of Chinese New Year.

If you’re looking for more cultural experiences during Chinese New Year, you might also want to check out the Jurong Lake Gardens, the Singapore Botanic Gardens, Haji Lane, or Little India. These areas are known for their rich cultural heritage and vibrant celebrations during the festival.

Shopping and Gifting in Singapore Chinese New Year

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Chinese New Year is a time for exchanging gifts and spreading good fortune. If you’re excited to participate in this tradition, there are plenty of places to shop for gifts and festive items in Singapore.

Chinatown Festive Street Bazaar

One popular option is to visit a Festive Fair, where you can find everything from traditional decorations to delicious snacks. The Chinatown Festive Street Bazaar is a must-visit, with its vibrant atmosphere and wide variety of stalls. You can also check out the River Hongbao, which features stunning lantern displays and cultural performances.

Hong Bao

When it comes to Gifts, there are many options to choose from. Filled with money, red packets or Hong Bao are famous for children and young adults. You can also consider gifting traditional treats like pineapple tarts, love letters, and bak kwa. If you’re looking for something more substantial, consider booking a reunion dinner at a restaurant or purchasing tickets to a cultural show.

Booking in advance is highly recommended, as Singapore’s Chinese New Year is busy. Many restaurants and shows sell out quickly, so plan. You can also consider purchasing gifts and decorations early to avoid the crowds.

Shopping and gifting during Chinese New Year is an exciting and vital tradition. Whether you’re looking for festive decorations, traditional treats, or unique gifts, Singapore has plenty of options. Just remember to book early and enjoy the festive atmosphere!

Chinese Zodiac Signs Celebrations in Singapore

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Welcome to the Year of the Water Rabbit! Singapore is buzzing with excitement as we welcome this new lunar year. From the colourful lanterns to the festive food, there is much to see and do during this time. Here are a few highlights for you to check out:

Bunny-ful Blessings at Gardens by the Bay

Gardens by the Bay is a must-visit during Chinese New Year; this year is no exception. The Flower Dome has been transformed into a wonderland of bunnies, with over a hundred rabbit sculptures on display. Surrounded by over 2,000 colourful Chinese New Year blooms, this is the perfect place to snap photos and soak up the festive atmosphere.

Spring in the Sea at SEA Aquarium

If you want something different, head to SEA Aquarium for their Spring in the Sea celebration. The aquarium celebrates the Year of the Water Rabbit with a unique underwater show featuring Manta Mascots and Mermaids this year. You’ll also see some of the aquarium’s most fascinating creatures up close, including sharks, rays, and sea turtles.

Whether exploring Gardens by the Bay or diving into SEA Aquarium’s Spring in the Sea, many ways exist to celebrate the Year of the Water Rabbit in Singapore. So grab your family and friends, put on your festive best, and join in the fun!

Traditions and Practices in Singapore Chinese New Year

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Chinese New Year is a time for family reunions and bonding. It is also a time for observing age-old traditions and practices that are believed to bring good luck and prosperity in the coming year. Here are some of the most popular New Year traditions and techniques that you can observe in Singapore:

Visiting Relatives

Seeing relatives is an integral part of Chinese New Year celebrations. Visiting your elders and wishing them good health and fortune for the coming year is customary. You can exchange red packets (ang baos) with your relatives, which contain money and are believed to bring good luck.

Lion Dance

The Lion Dance is a traditional Chinese dance performed during Chinese New Year. It is believed to bring good luck and scare away evil spirits. The dance involves performers dressed in lion costumes, accompanied by loud drumming and cymbals.

Whisky and Foxtrot

Whisky and Foxtrot is a popular Chinese New Year tradition in Singapore. It involves drinking whisky and dancing the Foxtrot to bring good luck and prosperity in the coming year. This tradition is believed to have originated in the 1920s and is still observed by many Singaporeans today.

Ru Yi

Ru Yi is a Chinese sceptre believed to bring good luck and prosperity. It is often given as a gift during Chinese New Year and is supposed to help recipients achieve their goals and dreams.

Azaleas

Azaleas are a popular flower during Chinese New Year. They are believed to bring good luck and prosperity and are often used as decorations in homes and businesses.

Chrysanthemums

Chrysanthemums are another popular flower during Chinese New Year. They are believed to bring longevity and good luck and are often used as decorations in homes and businesses.

God of Fortune

The God of Fortune is a popular deity during Chinese New Year. He is believed to bring good luck and prosperity and is often depicted carrying a bag of gold coins. Many Singaporeans will pray to the God of Fortune during Chinese New Year to ask for good luck and prosperity in the coming year.

Observing these traditions and practices during Chinese New Year can help you bring good luck and prosperity in the coming year. Whether you are visiting relatives, watching a Lion Dance performance, or praying to the God of Fortune, there are many ways to celebrate Chinese New Year in Singapore.

Staying in Singapore During the Chinese New Year

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You’ve decided to stay in Singapore for Chinese New Year and are in for a treat! There are plenty of things to do and see during this festive time, so let’s dive in.

Staycation

Firstly, why not treat yourself to a staycation? Many hotels in Singapore offer special Chinese New Year packages with festive decorations, complimentary meals, and even lion dance performances. It’s the perfect way to soak up the joyous atmosphere without leaving the comfort of your city.

More Adventurous

If you want something more adventurous, head to the Singapore Flyer. This giant observation wheel offers stunning views of the city, and during Chinese New Year, it’s decked out in festive decorations. Take a ride during the day or at night to see the city in all its glory.

Local Culture

For a taste of local culture, head to the F1 Pit Building. This is where the annual River Hongbao festival takes place, with lantern displays, cultural performances, and delicious food stalls. It’s a great way to experience the festive spirit of Chinese New Year.

Heart of Chinatown

If you want to explore the heart of Chinatown, stroll down New Bridge Road, South Bridge Road, and Eu Tong Sen Street. These streets have festive decorations, performances, and food stalls selling traditional Chinese New Year goodies. Don’t miss Kreta Ayer Square, where you can see the famous lion dance performances.

Unique CNY Experience

For a unique Chinese New Year experience, head to Tu Zai. This is a traditional Chinese puppet theatre that has been entertaining audiences for over 100 years. During Chinese New Year, they put on special performances featuring Daruma dolls and other festive characters.

Finally, don’t forget to embrace the spirit of happiness and “Embrace Tomorrow” by wishing everyone you meet a cheerful “Gong Xi Fa Cai” (which means “wishing you prosperity”)! The city will be painted red, so join in and “paint the town red” with your festive spirit.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some fun activities to do in Singapore during Chinese New Year?

Singapore offers numerous fun activities during the Chinese New Year. You can visit the River Hongbao festival, which features larger-than-life lanterns and fireworks. Another popular activity is the Chingay Parade, which showcases colourful floats and performances. You can also visit the Chinatown Street Market to buy souvenirs and traditional food items.

Where can I experience the best Chinese New Year celebrations in Singapore?

The best Chinese New Year celebrations in Singapore can be experienced in Chinatown. The streets are decorated with colourful lanterns, and various performances and events are happening throughout the 15-day festival. You can also visit the Thian Hock Keng Temple, the oldest Chinese temple in Singapore, to witness traditional Chinese New Year rituals.

What are some traditional Chinese New Year dishes I can try in Singapore?

Singapore is a foodie’s paradise, with many traditional dishes to try during Chinese New Year. Some popular dishes include Yu Sheng, a raw fish salad; Bak Kwa, a sweet barbecued pork; and Nian Gao, a sticky rice cake. You can also try traditional dumplings and rice balls.

What is the significance of the Chinese New Year display in Chinatown Singapore?

The Chinese New Year display in Chinatown Singapore is significant as it represents the Chinese zodiac animal of the year. A different animal is celebrated each year, and the exhibition features intricate decorations and lighting. It is a popular spot for tourists and locals to take photos and soak in the festive atmosphere.

What unique events happen during the 15 days of Chinese New Year in Singapore?

Apart from the River Hongbao Festival and Chingay Parade, many unique events happen during the 15 days of Chinese New Year in Singapore. You can attend the Huayi Festival, which showcases Chinese arts and culture, or the Chinese New Year Countdown Party at Marina Bay Sands. You can also visit the Singapore Zoo to see unique animal-themed displays.

Is Singapore a good place to visit during Chinese New Year?

Yes, Singapore is a great place to visit during Chinese New Year. The city comes alive with festive decorations and events, with many traditional dishes to try. The weather is also pleasant during this time, making it a great time to explore the city. However, some shops and attractions may be closed on the festival’s first two days.


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