[QODLink]
Asia-Pacific

Chinese celebrate start of year of the horse

Millions attend fireworks displays and pray at temples as parts of Asia mark the lunar new year.

Last updated: 31 Jan 2014 09:34
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback

Chinese communities around the world began celebrating the Chinese New Year with customary riotous firework displays.

Celebrations began well into Thursday night in Beijing and large crowds lined up on Friday morninge outside temples to be among the first to pray for good fortune.

This year is signified by the horse, a dynamic animal in Chinese mythology conducive to achievement.

"The year of the horse it represents immediate success. It means that if there is something you've been wanting to do, when the year of the horse arrives, you will definitely succeed in doing it. I will succeed too," said 60-year-old salesman Yang Zongtao.

The Chinese New Year lasts for fifteen days and is the longest and most important festivity in the lunar calendar, virtually shutting down mainland China.

It is the only holiday of the year for many.

Airports, train and bus stations saw a crush of holiday travelers, with migrant workers making the lengthy trip back to their rural hometowns and prosperous urban dwellers heading to vacations abroad.

A continuing campaign against waste and corruption foreshadowed more modest celebrations this year, while a crackdown on air pollution attempted to reign the usual orgy of fireworks.

On self-governing Taiwan, revelers jammed into the capital Taipei's historic shopping district to load up on holiday snacks.

Koreans and Vietnamese also celebrate the holiday.

249

Source:
Agencies
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Featured on Al Jazeera
Weaving and handicrafts are being re-taught to a younger generation of Iraqi Kurds, but not without challenges.
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Colleagues of detained Al Jazeera journalists press demands for their release, 100 days after their arrest in Egypt.
Mehdi Hasan discusses online freedoms and the potential of the web with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
Featured
As nuclear age approaches eighth decade, visitors flock to historic bomb craters at New Mexico test sites.
Venezuela's president lacks the charisma and cult of personality maintained by the late Hugo Chavez.
Despite the Geneva deal, anti-government protesters in Ukraine's eastern regions don't intend to leave any time soon.
Since independence, Zimbabwe has faced food shortages, hyperinflation - and several political crises.
After a sit-in protest at Poland's parliament, lawmakers are set to raise government aid to carers of disabled youth.
join our mailing list