On Saturday, 17 February the centre of The Hague will come alive with the excitement, sounds of fireworks and bold colours of the Chinese New Year Festival. Visitors can enjoy Chinese dancing, music, acrobatics and martial arts as well as a colourful parade through the streets of Chinatown.
To kick off the Year of the Dog, 2 large-scale celebrations of the Chinese New Year will take place in The Hague: the national celebrations in and around The Hague City Hall and the local celebrations in The Hague’s Chinatown neighbourhood.
All the festivities in The Hague are free of charge and open to the public.
Kick-off on Spuiplein
The festivities begin at 10:30 with a traditional Chinese opening ceremony with fireworks on the Spuiplein in the presence of the mayor of The Hague and the Chinese ambassador to the Netherlands.
The colourful cast of characters including Chinese lions and dragons will then make their way to Chinatown accompanied by the sounds of energetic drumming and exploding firecrackers. There they will usher in the New Year and chase away the spirits of the past year.
There will also be a big Chinese New Year’s market and presentations will be given on Chinese culture and travel in China in the JoHo center (Paviljoensgracht 18).
Grand spectacle in City Hall
The Dutch national celebrations of the Chinese New Year will begin at 11:30 in The Hague City Hall and promises to be a grand spectacle. The afternoon will be filled with Chinese dance, music, acrobatics and exhibitions of different forms of martial arts.
There will also be a small Asian market in the Atrium and a variety of cultural activities on offer. The afternoon will conclude at 16.30 hrs.
Photo credit: CNY-2017b-Spuiplein-Ceremony-Ronald