The Year of the Horse – Chinese New Year in London

Celebrate the Year of the Horse:

The new moon on January 30th/31st begins the Year of the Horse.  I rather like what I’m reading about the year to come in Chinese astrology.  We can expect fast victories, unexpected adventure and suprising romance.  The Year of the Horse should be a fortunate year that brings luck and good things.

Happy New Year - Year of the Horse

In any case, whether or not you believe in Astrology (even selectively like me), Chinese New Year is a chance to celebrate at that point in Winter when we all need a bit of fun.  So, if you’d like to find somewhere to celebrate and say ‘Kung Hei Fat Choy, which I thought just meant  Happy New Year but which Wiki tells me means “Congratulations and be prosperous, now give me a red envelope!” here are a few ideas:

Of course the first and most obvious thing is to make your way to Chinatown and Trafalgar Square on Sunday 2nd February, when there will be lion teams, local artist, traditional food and craft stalls and a parade that runs from Charing Cross and Shaftesbury Avenue into Trafalgar Square.  It’s all free and should provide a great day out for all ages.  Visit London has a full schedule on their website and you might consider a stay in London to make the most of what promises to be an excellent day of festivities

chinese New Year, London

But if you can’t make it into central London on Sunday there are more lion dance performances happening around London.  Royal China, where I enjoyed a splendid dim sum feast last year,  have a whole schedule at their restaurants with events from 31st January through to 7th February at 7.30pm.  I’m reliably informed the lions will be roaming around London as follows – and warned that those who want to benefit from good luck for the forthcoming year and watch one of the dances DOES need to book.   Check their website for more details.

  • Baker Street: 31 January and 3 February 2014
  • Canary Wharf: 4 February 2014
  • Queensway: 5 February 2014
  • Fulham: 6 February 2014
  • Harrow on the Hill: 7 February 2014

1. Royal China - New Mural

Then, there’s a rather wonderful sounding feast at The Chinese Cricket Club.  A four course menu that includes a special ‘prosperity platter’ filled with snacks to share – each of which has a symbolic meaning to ensure a prosperous new year.  I’m intrigued and planning to pop along there tomorrow to find out more!  I’ve also been promised that there will be Ang Pow Prizes, those little red envelopes that symbolise good luck and fortune to the Chinese.  Oh, and if you are already feeling lucky, all you need to do is tweet a picture of you with a horse to @ChineseCClub between now and 5th February to be in with a chance of winning an exclusive dinner for four, dining vouchers or free drinks.  Remember to use #YearoftheHorse and you could have a very fortunate start to the New Year indeed.

Chinese New Year at the Chinese Cricket Club

Or, for something completely different,  on Friday 31 January, Haché will be celebrating Chinese New Year with a difference.  If you happen to prefer a burger to egg fried rice, pop along to Shoreditch, Camden, Chelsea  or Clapham where you will find the burger joints all dressed-up, Chinese style with traditional Chinese lanterns, complimentary fortune cookies, jasmine tea and rice wine.  Alongside their gourmet  burgers, Hache are planning to serve up brioche buns filled with shredded duck, cucumber, spring onions and hoi sin sauce.

hache chinese new year

I wonder what else might be happening for Chinese New Year.  Let me know in the comments if you’ve heard of anything fabulous!

Xīn nián hǎo!

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Comments

  1. The site of Chinese food makes me hungry- let alone a festival to eat as much as we can of it! I’m not sure if I believe in astrology either, well sometimes it applies sometimes it doesn’t, guess I’m selective like you :)

  2. Wow looks like you had a festive time with lots of good food.

  3. I was in China Town last week too! It was about 11pm and everything was still open, I ended up walking around the Chinese supermarkets and picking up weird things to eat back at the hotel…so much fun! It looked gorgeous with the lanterns though, I really need to eat next time I’m there though.

  4. Nate Leung says:

    I always look forward to Chinese New Year. It just shows how fast time flies. Thank you so much for sharing!

  5. I don’t know of anything fabulous but it all definitely sounds like a lot of FUN!!!! The food photos really made me drool.

  6. When my daughter was born nearly 17 years ago, I had a Chinese midwife and it was Chinese New Year so it’s a celebration which is rather close to my heart. Often we do go into China Town to be part of the whole experience. Looking forward to the 2nd Feb.

  7. I always wanted to go there and experience it myself ! Unlucky me I’m in Budapest for the next couple of days.

  8. Mmmm! This post makes me want to go. I hope you have a great trip! Enjoy the food and the sights. :-)

  9. FABULOUS post and as a long term resident of Hong Kong, I am always ready to embrace anything Chinese, and this looks like fun!

  10. Ooh need a year that brings luck and good things Fiona. This has put one very big smile on my face.

  11. You have all the luck down there in London Fiona, I obviously live in the wrong place for all the fun. I would love to see all that. Happy Chinese New Year! Oh and be prosperous :)

  12. Posts like this make me really wish I was still in London to join in the fun! So much going on, it’s wonderful. Can’t say the same of rural Herefordshire I did receive a red envelope from Jacques that he’d made in pre-school, was supposed to have lucky coins in for me….but seeing as they were choccie ones he got there first. Hope that doesn’t bring bad luck? They’ve been celebrating all week at school which is fun, and we made spring rolls for our tea today :)

  13. this looks simply splendid. What a great array of food and to be able to win a dinner for four what a lucky opportunity for someone

  14. Lovely preview Fiona, nice round up of events, I got myself a cute small red lantern and a colourful tiny horse and of course stuffed my face with yummilicious dim sums at my fav place in Chinatown.

  15. That duck in Hoisin looks divine Fiona. Hope you had fun!
    Janie x

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