Chinese New Year: celebrate the Year of the Dragon in Hong Kong

Hong Kong is ready to celebrate the Year of the Dragon in spectacular style with stunning flower markets, a fantastic International Night Parade, dazzling fireworks, lively sporting events and much more.

Chinese New Year is the most important celebration of the year and the lead up to the festival is a busy time for locals, who immerse themselves in a whirl of house cleaning and renovation, installation of auspicious red and gold decorations, selection of peach or plum blossom branches and kumquat trees laden with fruit.

Visitors to Hong Kong can join locals at one of the pre-holiday flower markets in Hong Kong in search of the perfect bloom to bring good luck in the coming year. In return, you'll be treated to a riot of colour and aromas. One of the largest and most popular is in Victoria Park; open from 17-22 January.The best time to visit to avoid the crowds is between 6pm - 9pm.

One of the 'must see' events of the celebrations, the Chinese New Year Night Parade, takes place on 23rd January.  The parade features illuminated floats accompanied by spectacular international and local performing groups. Experience the carnival atmosphere as festive crowds line the route around Tsim Sha Tsui and watch the colourful parade pass by. And what better backdrop than the stunning Victoria Harbour?

At midnight on the 23rd visit the Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple to witness the locals rushing through the gates to be the first to plant incense to receive good luck.

On New Year's Day (24 January) enjoy the fantastic Lunar New Year fireworks display traditionally used to scare bad spirits away.  For some of the best views head over to Wan Chai near the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre or the Avenue of Stars in Tsim Sha Tsui. The spectacular backdrop of city lights, harbour and surrounding mountains makes this a must see event.

For those who enjoy a flutter at the races, the Chinese New Year Race Day on the 25 January is a great event. Join local sports fans hoping to kick off the New Year with a winner and head to Sha Tin racecourse. There will also be an array of festive programmes staged at the Sha Tin racecourse designed to bring prosperity and good fortune to racing fans.

Kung Hei Fat Choi! - May You Prosper in the New Year!Hong Kong Airlines - new flights

Hong Kong Airlines has also announced the launch of flights between Hong Kong and Taiwan.

The airline has been granted traffic rights between Hong Kong and Taiwan and will launch four daily passenger flights on routes to Taipei or Kaohsiung in the first quarter of 2012.

Taiwan is one of the fast-developing passenger markets in Asia, with continued strong and fast-growing demand in the tourism industry.

The addition of these two cities further extends Hong Kong Airlines network of onward connections, which includes Shanghai and Tokyo.

Hong Kong Airlines will launch the world’s first all Club Class wide body long-haul scheduled service between London and Hong Kong on 08 March 2012.

The airline has ordered three Airbus A330-200 aircraft for the new route, configured with just 116 seats in an exclusive all Club Class offering; Club Premier and Club Classic.

Established in 2006, Hong Kong Airlines is a modern airline with a strong focus on flying to key business and leisure destinations in China, Japan, Southeast Asia and Europe.

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