First thing’s first, happy Chinese New Year! I hope you all had an amazing time and enjoyed the cultural event as much as we did. We join in on the celebrations every year in Manchester as they have events taking place all around the center of the city, and throw a huge parade starting from Albert Square all the way up to China Town. All this entertainment was free apart from individual fun fair rides, which is amazing considering the amount of entertainment you get across the 4 days it took place.
We got into Manchester on the Sunday (10th of February) for 12 pm, where we instantly joined the crowd for the parade. The parade started at Albert Square and we were told started at 12 pm, but by the time it went pass us (we were stood opposite the National Art Gallery) it was just gone 1 pm so there was a lot of waiting around, not that I’m complaining it was definitely worth the wait.
The parade lasted around 20 minutes and we all got a taste of the amazing Chinese culture through a variety of entertainments. There were dancers, and huge puppets, and all sorts of things associated with the Chinese culture. We were in around the 3rd row out of 6, so if you are eager to get a space at the front I would recommend you get there early as before you know it there are thousands of people all trying to see the parade from a good angle.
Once the parade was over, everybody split up. At this point it was almost 1:30 pm and the restaurants were quick to fill up. We struggled to find somewhere to eat and only just managed to find a seat in the Food Court in the Arndale. Because of this I would recommend booking a table, or bringing your own food, because after standing around for so long you are likely to become hungry quickly.
On our search for food we came across this huge Chinese Dragon that we took photos next too, which was located outside of Selfridges. Surprisingly it wasn’t that busy but there was a slight wait for a photo next to the dragon itself, but you could always just take a selfie with it in the background like we did if you are on a tight schedule wanting to fit everything in.
After food, we made our way back up to China Town. The streets were all decorated beautifully with Chinese lanterns everywhere you look. There was a variety of rides for the kids and fairground stalls attracting us all to get more involved. There was a stage for more entertainment where we watched classical Chinese lion dancers, martial arts, music and acrobatics.
We had such an amazing day out here celebrating and exploring the treasures of China Town in Manchester. There was so many stalls and little gift shops that sold so many traditional Chinese items but each shop was so crowded you could barely move to look around, but that just added to the chaotic, exiting atmosphere.
Before we went home, we watched the restaurant blessings where the Chinese Dragon would go in and out each building with music following it. Unfortunately we ran out of time to watch the firework display but that took place at 7 pm when it got dark enough out.
Of course, I would 100% recommend joining in on the Chinese New Year celebrations and I hope everybody has an amazing Year of the Pig. Thank you for reading and if you have any questions please leave a comment down below.