Haikou Festivals & Events
Besides the national festivals celebrated across the country by the Chinese people such as the Spring Festival, National Day and the International Labor Day, etc., Haikou celebrates a number of local festivals.
Hainan International Coconut Festival
This takes place during late March or early April. Hainan Island is known as the 'Coconut Island' and the unique Hainan International Coconut Festival is held in Haikou each year. The largest and most influential local one in Hainan, it attracts tourists all over the world. It is designed to enhance local commerce and features tourism, culture, folk customs, sports and economic issues and trade. The coconut culture and folk customs of the Li and Miao minorities make a special contribution to the celebrations.
Huanhua Festival (Flower Exchanging Festival)
Celebrated on January 15th of the Chinese lunar calendar, the Chinese Lantern Festival, the Huanhua Festival is a joyful event. On this day people exchange flowers to pray for a happy life in the coming year. The young people express their good feelings to each other through exchanging flowers. The rose is the most popular flower chosen for exchanging. After exchanging flowers, thousands of people will go to visit the flower markets together, eat snacks and dance. It dates from the Tang Dynasty and has a history of more than 1,000 years. The grandest sight of this festival is to be found along the street between Haifu Road and Fucheng Town in the Qiongshan District.
From the second day to the nineteenth day of the second lunar month, Xinpo Town (in Qiongshan District) and many other places in Hainan Province will celebrate it of four days. This is a sacrifice activity for commemorating Madame Xi'an, who is a very remarkable politician and militarist in the sixth century. She helped the Hainan people eradicate insecurity and made the local people lead a happy life. Whenever the Junpo Festival is celebrated, all families will eat taro, sweet potato and shallot to pray for good fortunes and longevity. Villages will organize some folk performances like Yangge Dance and Lion Dance.
Boao Forum for Asia
Boao Forum is a non-government and non-profit international organization started in 1998. Boao Forum for Asia was formally inaugurated in February 2001 and is quite popular with the Asian countries. From 2002 on, the Yearly Conference of the Boao Forum is held in Boao regularly (Boao lies in Qionghai City, not far from Haikou). The conference is intended for creating a good atmosphere for the Asian countries’ communication and improving their cooperation relating to economy, culture, education and many other aspects.
Tips: 1. The 2009 Conference of Boao Forum for Asia will be held from April 17th to April 19th, 2009.
2. How to Get to Boao:
Qionghai Coach Bus Station provides the buses to Boao. The buses depart every 10 minutes. The ticket costs CNY3.5 and it takes about 40 minutes to get to Boao.