When is Chinese New Year 2022, why is it celebrated and what’s the animal zodiac sign?

·2-min read

Chinese New Year 2022 is almost upon us with millions of people across the globe set to celebrate.

Festivities to mark the occasion, also known as Lunar New Year or Spring Festival, run from Tuesday, February 1 to February 15.

There are twelve Chinese Zodiac animals, each of which is linked to certain characteristics and elements, and they rotate each year.

This year is the Year of the Tiger.

The animal occupies the third position in the Chinese Zodiac.

The twelve zodiac animals are the Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig.

Here are a few more facts you need to know before celebrations begin

What is Chinese New Year and why celebrate?

Chinese New Year marks the start of the new year according to the traditional Chinese lunar calendar.

The Ox - your zodiac animal is decided by your birth year. (Getty)
The Ox - your zodiac animal is decided by your birth year. (Getty)

In mainland China it is usually referred to as the Spring Festival. It is one of several lunar New Years celebrated in different Asian countries.

Red decorations are a common sight during Chinese New Year. It is a lucky colour in China and billions of "red envelopes" are sent to family and friends each year to mark the occasion.

More than two billion people celebrate the festival worldwide.

It is a national holiday in countries including Indonesia, Vietnam, South Korea, Malaysia, North Korea and Taiwan.

Chinatown: London celebrates the Year of the Ox in 2021
Chinatown: London celebrates the Year of the Ox in 2021

What is the zodiac sign for 2022?

According to the Chinese zodiac, 2022 is the Year of the Tiger.

It starts from February 1 and lasts until January 2, 2023.

Those born in the Year of the Tiger are said to be brave, competitive, unpredictable and confident.

Recent and upcoming years of the Tiger are 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010, and 2022.

Many Chinese children wear hats or shoes with a tiger image on for good luck.

How is Chinese New Year celebrated in London?

The main parade in London, the biggest of its kind outside Asia, usually attracts hundreds of thousands of people from the capital and the rest of the UK.

The major set-piece event usually involves parades, processions and state performances.

The main parade usually starts in Charing Cross Road before going through Shaftesbury Avenue. It ends with the lion eye-dotting ceremony in Trafalgar Square.

However, senior figures in London’s Chinese community told the Standard that the event will be scaled-down for the second year running due to the pandemic.

Instead there will be a small-scale lion dance and night market in Newport Place in Chinatown with video screens showing pre-recorded performances.

A spokesperson for the Mayor of London said: “As the Omicron variant continues to spread across the capital, the organisers have had to take the difficult decision to scale back the planned Lunar New Year celebrations.

“It is disappointing that we are not now going to be able to gather together to celebrate in Trafalgar Square in our usual numbers, however we will still be marking the occasion and details will be announced in due course.”

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