When Is Chinese New Year 2023?

Plus, the history of Chinese New Year and Chinese New Year traditions.

Kung hei fat choi! The Chinese New Year begins Sunday, January 22, 2023, marking the end of the Year of the Tiger, and the beginning of the Year of the Rabbit. Also known as the Lunar New Year or the Spring Festival, the Chinese New Year is celebrated in several East Asian countries and in many other parts of the world with feasts, fireworks and parades. For many, it’s a weeks-long celebration marked by various rituals and traditions that are meant to usher in good luck for the coming year. Read on to find out more about Chinese New Year traditions and the history of Chinese New Year. 

What is Chinese New Year?

Chinese New Year is a celebration based on the ancient Chinese lunar calendar. It typically lasts about 15 days and is a time for honoring deities and ancestors, as well as for hosting family gatherings and feasts. 

Related: Chinese New Year Animals

When is the Chinese New Year 2023?

The date of Chinese New Year varies from year to year. This year, the Chinese New Year begins on Sunday, January 22, 2023, whereas in 2022, the Chinese New Year began on February 1, 2022.

Typically, Chinese New Year begins between late January and late February, timed to the new moon. The holiday falls on different dates every year because it is based on the ancient Chinese lunar calendar. This calendar was based on lunar phases, solstices and equinoxes. It also varied by region and depended on which emperor was in power, according to History.com

Related: Chinese New Year Wishes and Greetings

Is Chinese New Year always on the same date?

No. The date of Chinese New Year changes each year, and is based on when the new moon falls between the end of January and the end of February. The dates vary each year because the festivities are timed to the ancient Chinese lunar calendar. 

How long does China shut down for the Chinese New Year?

People in China typically have a week off for Lunar New Year celebrations. 

What is the Chinese New Year animal in 2023?

Each Chinese New Year is marked by one of 12 animals from the Chinese zodiac. The Chinese New Year animal for 2023 is the Rabbit. 

When is the Year of the Rabbit?

The Year of the Rabbit begins on Jan. 22, 2023. 

What are the Chinese zodiac animals?

The twelve zodiac animals are the Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Pig.

Related: 6 Chinese New Year Traditions for Good Luck

Why does Chinese New Year last 15 days?

Chinese New Year typically lasts around 15 or 16 days because it begins with the new moon that falls sometime between the end of January and the end of February, and ends on the following full moon. The arrival of the full moon is traditionally marked with a Festival of Lanterns.

Is Chinese New Year religious?

Chinese New Year is closely tied to religious practices and beliefs from Confucianism, Buddhism, Taoism and various ancient folk religions, according to the AP. Today, however, it is largely celebrated as a secular holiday in China. 

What colors should you wear for Chinese New Year?

Red is seen as a lucky color in China year-round, and the Lunar New Year is no exception. Other bright colors such as gold or yellow, which symbolize power and prosperity, are also popular choices. 

What colors are not worn in Chinese New Year?

People in China would generally avoid wearing white during Chinese New Year celebrations, as white represents death and is worn at funerals. Black is also sometimes considered an unlucky color thanks to its associations with darkness, according to ChinaHighlights.com.

How do you say Happy Chinese New Year?

There are a few different English translations of Happy (Chinese) New Year, but people often say Shing Nyan Kwai Lo.

Are there other names for Chinese New Year?

The Chinese New Year is sometimes also referred to as the Lunar New Year or the Spring Festival.  

What foods are eaten on Chinese New Year?

As with many holidays around the world, feasting is an important aspect of Chinese New Year celebrations. Some foods traditionally have special meanings during this festive period. For example, some people eat long noodles because they symbolize long life, according to History.com

Many families also make round or crescent-shaped dumplings stuffed with cabbage or pork, which are said to bring good fortune, according to NPR. Sometimes, coins are placed inside dumplings for luck. 

Related: 25 Authentic Chinese New Year Recipes

What do you drink on Chinese New Year?

Wine is a popular beverage for Chinese New Year. During the New Year’s Eve feast, many people drink a type of white wine called nianjiu, which literally means “year alcohol,” according to ChineseNewYear.net.

What activities do you do on Chinese New Year?

Chinese New Year is marked by several traditions. Many people clean their homes thoroughly to get rid of any “huiqi,” or unlucky thoughts or breaths, that collected over the past year, according to History.com. This cleaning should be done before the stroke of midnight on Lunar New Year’s Eve, according to CNN

Families also gather for special feasts during the Lunar New Year period. During these celebrations, firecrackers and fireworks might be set off, and young people are often given money in red envelopes, according to Britannica.com

Celebrations also commonly include a nighttime parade, during which people carry glowing lanterns and carry a large, glowing dragon through the streets. 

Why should you not wash your hair on Chinese New Year?

Washing or cutting your hair on the first day of the Lunar New Year is seen as bad luck because it’s as if you’re washing away your luck and prosperity for the coming year. Some also believe that showers should be avoided altogether on the first day of the Chinese New Year. Cleaning the house on the first day of the new year is also seen as inauspicious for similar reasons. 

What do oranges symbolize for Chinese New Year?

Oranges are often given as gifts during Chinese New Year. They are seen to resemble the sun and are associated with the positive yang principle, according to ChinaHighlights.com. So, they are thought to bring good fortune and good blessings. 

What is the best gift for Chinese New Year?

Popular gifts for friends on Chinese New Year include tea, tea sets and fruits — as well as alcohol or tobacco, if you know they would enjoy those items. According to ChinaHighlights.com, seniors are often given clothing such as gloves, scarves or sweaters, and kids might receive candy, toys, school supplies or red envelopes filled with money.

What is Chinese New Year gift etiquette?

There are some rules to follow when giving gifts on Chinese New Year, according to ChinaHighlights.com. First, pay attention to the color of the gift and wrapping paper. Red, yellow and gold are good colors to use because they symbolize wealth. Steer clear of white, even white envelopes, because that color represents death. Blue and black should also be avoided.

Also, be careful with numbers when giving monetary gifts. The word ‘four’ has a similar pronunciation to the word ‘death’ in several Chinese languages, so avoid giving any amount of money that includes that number, or even giving any gift in multiples of four. On the other hand, the number ‘eight’ is considered lucky, so monetary gift amounts such as ‘88’ would be a good choice. When giving or receiving a present, it’s considered polite to use both hands. And when giving money, make sure the bills are clean and new. 

Which Chinese zodiac sign is the luckiest?

Each Chinese zodiac sign is considered lucky in its own way. However, some signs may be seen as particularly lucky on certain auspicious dates and years. For example, people born in the Year of the Ox on the 13th or 27th of any month are considered especially fortunate, according to Your Tango. And for people born in the Year of the Rabbit, being born on the 26th or 27th day of the month are said to be rewarded with high status and “harmonious marriage.” Each zodiac sign has its own particularly auspicious dates and years.

In 2023, the luckiest signs are said to be Oxes, Tigers and Snakes, according to ChinaHighlights.com.

What is the personality of the Year of the Rabbit?

According to traditional beliefs from the Chinese zodiac, the Rabbit is associated with being a symbol of “longevity, peace and prosperity in Chinese culture,” as explained by ChinaHighlights.com. People born in the Year of the Rabbit are often considered "vigilant, witty, quick-minded and ingenious."

What are Year of the Rabbit's lucky colors?

Lucky colors associated with the Year of the Rabbit are blue and green, according to ChinaHighlights.com.

What was the Chinese New Year animal in 2022?

The 2022 Chinese New Year, which ends in January 2023, was the Year of the Tiger.

What was the Chinese New Year animal in 2021?

The 2021 Chinese New Year was the Year of the Ox.

How long is the Chinese New Year 2023?

In 2023, Chinese New Year celebrations begin on Jan. 22 and end on Feb. 5. The Chinese New Year public holiday (which begins on Chinese New Year's Eve) is from January 21-27, 2023.

How long is the Year of the Rabbit?

The Year of the Rabbit will last from Jan. 22, 2023, through Feb. 9, 2024.

Which Zodiac is the luckiest in 2023?

In 2023, the luckiest signs are said to be Oxes, Tigers and Snakes, according to ChinaHighlights.com.

Next, 7 foods to eat for good luck on the Chinese New Year.