Lantern Festival, also called Yuanxiao Festival (Chinese:元宵节), holiday celebrated in China and other Asian countries that honours deceased ancestors on the 15th day of the first month of the lunar calendar. The holiday marks the first full moon of the new lunar year and the end of the Chinese New Year ( Lunar New Year). The Lantern Festival is celebrated on Tuesday, February 15 in 2022.
Guessing Lantern Riddles
Guessing (solving) lantern riddles started in the Song Dynasty (960–1279), and it is one of the most important and popular activities of the Lantern Festival. Lantern owners write riddles on paper notes and paste them on the colorful lanterns. People crowd round to guess the riddles. If someone thinks they have the right answer, they can pull the riddle off and go to the lantern owner to check their answer. If the answer is right, there is usually a small gift as a prize
Eating Tangyuan (Yuanxiao)
Eating Tangyuan（Chinese:汤圆 tāngyuán） is an important custom of the Lantern Festival. Tangyuan, also called Yuanxiao (Chinese：元宵 yuán xiāo) in the north, are balls of glutinous rice boiled in a sweet soup. As Tangyuan is pronounced similarly to Tuan Yuan (团圆) in Chinese , which means 'reunion' and 'completeness', Chinese people believe that the round shape of the balls and bowls symbolize wholeness and togetherness. The popular lucky saying when eating tangyuan is 团团圆圆 (Chinese: Tuántuán yuányuán: 'Happy (family) reunion!'
Watching Dragon Dances and Lion Dances
As two of the most outstanding traditional folk dances in China, dragon and lion dances are common during the Lantern Festival. Chinese people (traditionally) regard the lion as a symbol of bravery and strength and believe that it's appearance can drive away evil and protect people and their livestock. Chinese people worship the dragon and regard it as a symbol of good luck.