VIETNAM FESTIVAL AND EVENTS
The festivals and
events are calendared in Lunar month. Normally, a lunar month stay
later than western month of around 30 days.
and February are the most interesting festival months in the year. in
Vietnam. Plenty of the festivals and special events would be organized
LUNAR NEW YEAR ( TET )
- Vietnamese and Chinese Lunar New Year, is the most important
Festival of Vietnamese people. This scared Festival sometime between
late January or early February (depend
on Lunar Calendar ) and Tet has
become so familiar to the Vietnamese that when Spring arrives, the
Vietnamese, wherever they may be, are all thrilled and excited with
the advent of Tet, and they feel an immense nostalgia, wishing to come
back to their homeland for a family reunion and a taste of the
particular flavors of the Vietnamese festivities.. Although
officially a three-day affair, festivities may continue for a week or
more with every effort made to indulge in eating, drinking, and
enjoyable social activities. It is also a time for family reunions,
and for paying respect to ancestors and the elders. Gifts of food are
made to friends, neighbors and relatives in the days before Tet.
The Tet of the New Year
is, above all, is an opportunity for the household genies to meet,
those who have helped during the year, namely the Craft Creator, the
Land Genie and the Kitchen God. Tet is also an opportunity to invite
and welcome deceased ancestors back for a family reunion with their
descendants to join the family's Tet celebrations. Finally, Tet is a
good opportunity for family members to meet. This custom has become
sacred and secular and, therefore, no matter where they are or
whatever the circumstances, family members find ways to come back to
meet their loved ones, gather for a dinner of traditional foods like
banh chung (a square cake made of sticky rice stuffed with beans and
pork), mang (a soup of boiled bamboo shoots and flied pork) and xoi
(orange sticky rice). This is followed by a visit to the local pagodas
Everyone is in a rush to
get a haircut, buy new clothes, spruce up their homes, visit friends,
settle outstanding debts, and stock up on traditional Tet delicacies.
Businesses hang festive red banners which read "Chuc Mung Nam Moi"
(Happy New Year) and city streets are festooned with colored lights.
Stalls spring up all over town to sell mut (candied fruits and jams),
traditional cakes, and fresh fruit and flowers. Certain markets sell
nothing but cone-shaped kumquat bushes. Others sell flowering peach
trees, symbols of life and good fortune which people bring into their
homes to celebrate the coming of spring. As vendors pour into the City
with peach trees strapped to their bicycles, the streets look like
moving pink forests.
The "Mam Ngu Qua"
The "five-fruit tray" on
the ancestral altar during the Tet Holidays symbolizes the admiration
and gratitude of the Vietnamese to Heaven and Earth and their
ancestors, and demonstrates their aspiration for a life of plenty.
Legend said abot of theories but in a simpler way, the five fruits
represent the quintessence that Heaven and Earth bless humans. This is
one of the general perceptions of life of the Vietnamese, which is
"When taking fruit, you should think of the grower".
Dao, Mai, Quat
(the Peach, Apricot and Kumquat)
Coming to Vietnam during
the season of the Tet festival, the visitor is engulfed in an ocean of
colorful flowers. Visiting flower shows, contemplating the buds and
blooms, and purchasing blossoms represents one of the distinct
Vietnamese cultural characteristics. The peach ( in the North ) and
the apricot blossoms (in the South) are symbols of the Vietnamese Tet.
The warm pink of the peach could very well match the dry cold of the
North, but the hot South seems to be flourishing in the riot of the
yellow of the apricot. The mandarin is symbolic of good fortune and,
therefore, people tend to choose the little plants laden with fruit,
big and orange, and verdant leaves for a longer display.
The Giao Thua
( New Year's Eve )
Thua is the most sacred point of time, the passage from the old to the
new year. It is popularly believed that in Heaven there are twelve
Highnesses in charge of monitoring and controlling the affairs on
earth, each of them taking charge of one year. The giao thua is the
moment of seeing off the old chieftain upon the conclusion of his term
and welcoming in the new one upon his assumption of office. For this
reason, every home makes offerings in the open air to pray for a good
After the giao thua is the start of the
new year with many customs and practices, amusements and
entertainment, all of a distinct Vietnamese folk culture. If you have
an opportunity to visit Vietnam during the Tet Holidays and to welcome
the Tet Festivities, together with the Vietnamese people, you will
surely be profoundly impressed by the distinct traditional culture
that is rich in national identity.
Food specialties for
On the last day of the
old year, the preparation of food to offer to the ancestors is of
special significance. Dishes to offer to the ancestors differ in the
Northern, Central and Southern parts of the country, depending on
their respective weather conditions at the time and on different local
agricultural products available. What is common in all regions of the
country during Tet holidays are the varieties of soups, fried, boiled,
or stewed dishes, meat, fish, vegetable... The foods that the
Vietnamese eat at Tet are varied and diverse What they have in common
is that the people throughout the country all want to have the best
and the most beautiful looking food on this occasion to offer their
ancestors and to treat their friends and guests.
Starting Dates in Western
Calendar 2004 Jan 26, 2005
Feb 13, 2006 Feb 3, 2007 Feb 22,