Differences on New Year Celebrations between North and South China
Chinese New Year, also called Spring Festival, is a common traditional festival for all Chinese people. In different areas and zones, people have their distinct ways to celebrate the most important festival, especially between north and south China. The differences can be discovered from different aspects, such as foods, decoration, gifts and other celebration practices.
Festival Foods - Dumplings Vs Rice Cake
The reunion dinner on Chinese New Year’s Eve is always the most significant meal throughout the entire year. People have a big feast with different kinds of delicacies cooked in various methods, such as frying, simmering, stewing and braising.
While people from southern area are accustomed to eating rice cake (Niangao in Chinese), which is made of glutinous rice flour. Niangao has an implied meaning that people get promoted to a higher position year after year. In Guangdong, Guangxi and Fujian Provinces, people have the rice cakes in their hotpot with sea food, other meat and vegetables as complementary dishes.
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Traditional Chinese New Year Food in Different Areas
Read more about How to Decorate for Chinese New Year.
Popularity of the New Year TV Gala
According to the statistics, the viewership of the Chinese New Year TV Gala in north China is overwhelmingly higher than that in southern cities. In cities like Beijing, Shenyang and Xi'an, it is already an indispensible tradition to watch the gala with families, but to people from Guangdong, Hainan, Fujian and Guangxi, the gala can hardly arouse their interest.
The Amounts of Red Envelope
Red envelopes are the most common and popular New Year gifts in China, which is known as Hongbao in north China but called Lishi in south, especially in Guangdong, Hong Kong and Fujian. Besides, the amount of the money stuffed in the packets differs a lot.
Worshiping the Ancestors
At the dawn of Chinese New Year’s Eve, people start to worship their ancestors, but in northern area of China, only men in the family can take part in the ceremony. Most of them are still conservative in this tradition. In southern cities, women are allowed to participate.