Chinese New Year, Lunar New Year, or Spring Festival is the most important of the traditional Chinese holidays. It is commonly called "Lunar New Year", because it is based on the lunisolar Chinese calendar. The festival traditionally begins on the first day of the first month in the Chinese calendar and ends with the Lantern Festival which is on the 15th day.
Chinese New Year is celebrated in countries and territories with significant Han Chinese populations (Chinatowns), such as Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Singapore, Taiwan, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Cambodia.
The dates of Chinese New Year in the near future:
Rabbit February 3, 2011
Dragon January 23, 2012
Snake February 10, 2013
Horse January 31, 2014
Sheep February 19, 2015
The Chinese New Year is really a family affair. Families get together and shops close for up to a week. Basically life comes to a standstill for one week around Chinese New Year.