Happy Chinese New Year 2016! Everything you need to know about the Year of the Monkey.
This year, Chinese New Year – The Year of the Monkey – begins on February 8th and lasts until January 27th, 2017.
Celebrations have started around the world – and now London is joining the festivities.
People gathered at one of Hong Kong’s best known temples – the Wong Tai Sin – to make their new year wishes, while dancers dressed in traditional costumes performed at Ditan Park in Beijing.
The Sydney Opera House in Australia was bathed in red light as part of city wide lumiere and lantern display to welcome in Chinese New Year
While preliminary events have been kicking off across the UK, the big celebrations in the capital won’t take place until Sunday 14th February.
On Saturday, the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square hosted a free Chinese New Year-themed family day, while Chiswick House Gardens launched the UK debut of the Magical Lantern Festival on Wednesday February 3rd.
The display, which included a 66-metre long dragon, runs until March 6th.
The new year, also known as the Spring Festival, is marked by the lunisolar Chinese calendar, so the date changes from year to year.
The festivities usually start the day before the New Year and continue until the Lantern Festival, the 15th day of the new year.
Each Chinese New Year is characterised by one of 12 animals which appear in the Chinese zodiac. The Chinese zodiac is divided into 12 blocks (or houses) just like its western counterpart, but with the major difference being that each house has a time-length of one year instead of one month.
This year it’s the Year of the Monkey, the ninth animal in the cycle. The next Year of the Monkey will be in 2028.
The personality of the Monkey
People born in the Year of the Monkey are characterised as lively, quick-witted, curious, innovative and mischievous, but it is also believed to be one of the most unlucky years in the Chinese calendar.
The general image of people in this zodiac sign is of always being smart, clever and intelligent, especially in their career and wealth.
In addition, their gentleness and honesty bring them an everlasting love life. Although they were born with enviable skills, they still have several shortcomings, such as an impetuous temper and a tendency to look down upon others.
- Strengths: sociable, innovative, enthusiastic, self-assured
- Weaknesses: suspicious, cunning, selfish, arrogant, jealous
People born in the year of the monkey are quick witted, intelligent and playful. They are mischievous but well-intentioned jokesters who love to play pranks but don’t mean to cause harm.