Dragon Boat Festival

Dragon Boat Festival









Dragon Boat Festival (also known as “Tuen Ng” in Cantonese & ”Duanwu” in Mandarin) is a traditional Chinese holiday in China and Chinese communities throughout East and Southeast Asia. It falls on the 5th day of the 5th month — why it also known as the “double fifth” — of the lunar calendar, which is Tuesday 30 May 2017. 

Every year, local communities throughout Hong Kong and China host their own dragon boat races and give everyone a chance to partake in the excitement of the event and/or enjoy the related traditional foods.



Origins of Tuen Ng


Considered to be the third most important Chinese festival, the Dragon Boat Festival commemorates the death of Qu Yuan (340-278 BC), a beloved statesman and famous poet durng of the Chinese kingdom of Chu. Jealous rivals had falsely accused him of treason, and, disgraced, he was exiled. Overwhelmed by misery, Qu Yuan subsequently drowned himself in the Mi Lo River. The festival’s distinctive dragon boat races are a re-enactment of the frantic and vain attempt by the fisherman to try and save him while tossing rice dumplings (zongzi) into the river in hope that the river creatures would eat them rather than Qu Yuan.


Zong Zi



This popular festival delight symbolizes the ones that were thrown in the river in the story of Qu Yuan. Each is filled with glutinous rice and wrapped in bamboo leaves -- other ingredients can be savory or sweet, or in some cases, both, and their contents often depend on the region. For example, a Cantonese favorite is one featuring a combination of beans, lotus seeds, chestnuts, pork and the golden yolk of a salted duck egg. Their sweet varieties can be filled with red bean or lotus seed paste. Chinese from further north often prefer ones stuffed with either ham or beans for their savory choice and plain rice one that you dip into sugar as their sweet. These Zongzi are widely available at this time of year and are sold at grocery stores, cake shops, major hotels and Chinese restaurants.


Dragon Boating


The dragon boat is a long skiff, traditionally made of teak (southern China) or the type of wood traditionally used for watercraft, that sports an ornately carved “dragon” head and tail. There are a number of sizes but a typical crew consists of two rows of paddlers, a drummer who beats the rhythm and a sweep who controls direction from the stern. For example those used at the 'Stanley International Dragon Boat Championship' in Hong Kong are medium-sized at 38 ft long, with 18 paddlers sitting in nine rows, 1 drummer and 1 sweep.


Activities Highlight in Cities 2017

Beijing   |   Guangzhou    |    Hong Kong   |   Shanghai



  2017 Dragon Boat Festival in Beijing Beihai Park
  Date May 2017
  Time 9:30 am - 13:30 pm
  Venue Beihai Park, 24 DiamMen Xi Dajie, Xicheng District

Dragon Boat and traditional folklore activities

  2017 Dragon Boat Festival Show in Daguanyuan Park  
  Date 30 May (Tuesday)
  Time 9:30 am - 11:00 am
  Venue Daguanyuan Park, 12 Nancaiyuan Street, Xuanwu District, Beijing

Traditional folklore activities including a competition for marking traditional Chinese rice dumpling from 10am -12am.

  Dragon Boat Festival Show
  2017 Dragon Boat Festival Activities in Taoran Ting Park 
  Date 28-30 May (Sunday - Tuesday) 
  Time 9:00am - 13:00pm
  Venue Taoran Ting Park, No. 19, Taiping Qiao Street, Xicheng District, Beijing

Traditional folklore activities including a competition for marking traditional Chinese rice dumpling



Changzhou Dragon Boat Carnival 201 7
  Date 20 May (Saturday)


Changzhou Island of Huangpu District 

 "May Day Dragon Boat Drum" activities 2017
  Date 20-30 May (Sunday - Tuesday)


 Lizhi Wan of Liwan District
 The 16th Dragon Boat Race 2017
  Date 28 May (Saturday)


Tou Cun, Panyu District


Hong Kong

There are quite a number of dragon boat competitions in the city from mid of May till early July. Join one and indulge yourself in this exciting traditional activity. Please click here for the details of the activities and events.

 Hong Kong International Dragon Boat Race 2017
  Date 2-4 June (Friday - Sunday)
  Time 8:00 am - 5:30 pm

Central Harbourfront, Hong Kong

  Discovery Bay Dragon Boat Races and Carnival 2017
  Date Race: 28 May (Sunday)
Carnival: 28 May (Sunday) 
  Time Race: 8:00am - 5:00pm
Carnival: 10:00am - 5:00pm

Race: Tai Pak Beach, Discovery Bay, Lantau Island
Carnival: DB Piazza, Discovery Bay, Lantau Island

  2017 Sai Kung Dragon Boat Race Gala
  Date 30 May (Tuesday)
  Time Race: 8:00am - 2:00pm
Carnival: 2:00pm - 5:00pm

Race: Sai Kung Promenade (near Sai Kung pier)
Carnival: Tin Hau Temple

  Stanley International Dragon Boat Championships 2017
  Date 30 May (Tuesday) 
  Time 8:00am - 5:00pm


Stanley Main Breach

  Tao O Dragon Boat Racing Competition 2017
  Date 30 May (Tuesday) 
  Time 9:00am-2:00pm
  Venue Tai O Promenade, Lantau Island



  Shanghai Suzhou Creek Dragon Boat Race
  Date 24-29 May 2017 (Wednesday - Monday)

Suzhou Creek along Brilliant City Residence Complex, near Jiangning Road, Putuo District

  The 9th Dragon Boat Race 2017
  Date 30 May 2017 (Tuesday)

Hua Ting Lake, Thames Town, Lane 990 Sanxin North Road, Songjiang

  Youth Dragon Boad Race
  Date 27 May 2017 (Saturday)

Chang Feng Park, 189 Da Du He Road, Changning District

  Activities at Yu Garden
  Date 16-30 May 2017 9:30-12:00

Old Temple City, next to Yu Garden, Fang Bang Middle Rd, Huangpu

* "Mandarin" Cultural Performance (Incl. Dancing & Folk Musical ones);

* Dragon Boat Festival Traditional Customs Show


At APP Mobility, we believe that understanding Chinese traditions and customs helps both newcomers and long-time residents make the most of this vibrant city and its rich heritage. Please feel free to forward this to others who may enjoy it & find it useful.

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Zongzi from Tolbxela@flickr






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