Cultura Park Explodes For Chinese New Year 2012
Dominique trekked to Bronkhorstspruit for the Chinese New Year celebrations and found the energy intoxicating!
It begins with a loud bang. The first cracker explodes, growing progressively louder as the chain ignites; the resounding explosion signalling the start of the New Year. The sound and fury driving away the old. A clean slate; the fledgling year baptised in fire. Drums and cymbals clang as a troupe of young men run across the square holding the writhing dragon of the New Year, a symbol of the soul of the Chinese people. The longer the dragon, the more luck it brings. The complex interactions of the traditional dragon and lion dance, chasing away evil spirits and inviting prosperity.
Chinese New year is the most important date on the Chinese calendar and heralds the start of the Spring Festival. It is a time for family gatherings, gift exchanges, and celebration. It's deeply rooted in ancient traditions and culture.
By far the best place to experience the opening of the Spring Festival is at the Nan Hua Buddhist temple in Bronkhorstspruit (an hour's drive from Jozi). The temple draws hordes of celebrators each year, the energy is intoxicating.
With flea market stalls, cultural performances and food galore symbolising abundance and prosperity; expect to gorge yourself on spring rolls, dumplings, New Year's cake, and the infamous "Stinky Tofu". An explosion of tastes, sights, sounds and texture. Not to be missed.
Each year is represented by one of the 12 animals of the Zodiac. This year we have entered into the year of the water dragon, a time of luck and good business prospects. If you were born in 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988 or 2000 then this is your year!
May good fortune grace your life.
Xin Nian Hao!
Click here to see the full Chinese New Year gallery
Nan Hua Road, Cultura Park, Bronkhorstspruit
by Dominique Baxewanos