The Lunar New Year is one of the most beloved festivals in Chinese culture, with roots that date back over 3500 years. This ancient tradition is celebrated in a variety of ways on our island, with the River Hongbao being one of the most iconic.

The River Hongbao has been on Singapore’s festive calendar every year since 1987. Held at Gardens by the Bay, this beloved event is a fixture on Singapore’s Lunar New Year calendar of celebrations, popular with locals and tourists alike.

An epic celebration by the bay
Wide shot of caishen which is a mythological figure worshipped in the Chinese folk religion and Taoism.

In Chinese custom, The New Year is closely tied to the Lunar New Year, and the 12 animals of the Chinese Zodiac. 

2023’s celebration marks the start of the year of the Rabbit, spanning eight days from 20 to 28 January. Visitors to the celebration will be astounded by massive glowing lanterns, adorned with adorable bunnies and other festive motifs. 

As part of the celebrations, visitors will be able to take part in an array of carnival games and activities — from Feng Shui live shows to exhibitions featuring greeting cards from the 1950s and 70s — and indulge in an array of street food and traditional snacks along Food Street.

Music and merriment abound as evening falls, with getai (literally translates to ‘song’ ‘stage’; a traditional Chinese performance) numbers, martial arts displays and instrumentals. 

While you’re in the vicinity, drop by Dahlia Dreams at Gardens by the Bay’s Flower Dome. Running from January 13 to February 26, Chinese New Year-themed floral display with over 100 rabbit figurines and an array of festive blossoms.

Be sure to check out River Hongbao’s official website for more info on this annual extravaganza’s exciting lineup.