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Before Travel

Public Holidays

There are seven national public holidays in China. They are New Year 's Day, Spring Festival (Chinese New Year), Ching Ming Festival, International Labor Day, Dragon Boat Festival, Mid-Autumn Festival, and National Day. Peak travel time in China always happens on these national public holidays, and Spring Festival is the busiest. As Spring Festival draws near, people working or studying away from home travel back and spend time with their family members. After Spring Festival, they get back to the cities and start to work or study again. During this time which lasts about 40 days, the person-time of traveling reaches 3 billion. Other busy travel days are National Day, International Labor Day. National Day is often called as the "Seven-day Golden Week" by Chinese people as many companies bundle the 3-day public holiday with 4 weekends together to have a 7-day vacation. During these days, many Chinese people choose to have a travel. Restaurants, hotels, planes, trains, buses, ships are always very crowded, and tickets for them are always in great demand. For this reason, please try to stay away from those days when you schedule traveling in China.




China Public Holiday Calendar 2013

New Year’s Day: (Jan. 1-3)

It is a public holiday, often celebrated with fireworks at the stroke of midnight as the New Year starts.




Spring Festival (Chinese New Year): (Feb. 9 – 15)

To millions of Chinese, Spring Festival means a lot more than one special day. Families spend weeks preparing for the big event--cleaning house, painting doors and windows red, and cooking special foods. Celebrations for the Spring Festival last a full fifteen days covering from Chinese New Year’s Eve to the 15th day of the 1st lunor month (Lantern Festival).




Ching Ming Festival (Grave-Sweeping Day): (Apr. 4 - 6)

Ching Ming literally means "clear and bright" and is the time of the year when Chinese families visit the graves of their ancestors to clean the graveside and pay their respects. People always make offerings of rice, fruit and wine to ensure that their loved ones have enough food and drink in the afterlife.



International Labor Day: (Apr. 29 – May. 1)

International Labor Day is celebrated on May 1 in China. In 2000, the Labor Day holiday was extended from 1 day to 3 days and was made one of the three Golden Weeks in China, allowing millions of Chinese people to travel during this period. Starting January 1, 2008, China reduced this holiday period down to 1 day, while simultaneously reviving three traditional Chinese holidays: Ching Ming Festival, Dragon Boat Festival and Mid-autumn Festival.




Dragon Boat Festival: (Jun. 10 – 12)

There are few sites more spectacular than a fleet of painted dragon boats racing toward the finish line, with a drummer in each boat hammering out the rhythm for the rowers to follow. The Dragon Boat Festival is the oldest Chinese festival. Find out more about this exciting event and learn how to make Zongzi, the sticky rice dumplings wrapped in bamboo leaves that are an essential feature of any Dragon Boat Festival celebration.



Mid-Autumn Festival: (Sep. 19 – 21)

When the moon is full, the Chinese celebrate by lighting colorful lanterns and enjoying delicious moon cakes. (Date: fifteenth day of the eighth Chinese lunar month).




National Day(Oct. 1-7)

The People’s Republic of China was founded on October 1, 1949; therefore October 1 of each year comes as National Day and is a public holiday. The National Day Holiday is a golden week in China. During these days, many Chinese choose to travel in the cool autumn, bringing a traveling peak.