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Chinese New Year in Phuket

Chinese New Year in Phuket

Phuket Chinese New Year 2024 is set to ring on February 10, with several days of festivities to celebrate the Year of the Tiger. With its large ethnic Chinese population descending from migrants to the island in the past, Phuket’s Lunar New Year festival is an important annual event. It seems to get bigger and more colourful with each passing year as the number of tourists from China arrives in larger numbers.

Chinese New Year dinners around Phuket

08feb(feb 8)12:00 am13(feb 13)10:00 pmCHINESE NEW YEAR SET MENU at Courtyard by Marriott in Phuket Town12:00 am - 10:00 pm (13) Courtyard by Marriott Phuket TownType:DiningArea:Phuket Town

09feb6:00 pm10:00 pmChinese New Year’s Buffet - The Dragon Night at Meliá Phuket Mai Khao6:00 pm - 10:00 pm MELIÁ PHUKET MAI KHAOType:Dining,EventArea:Mai KhaoPriceTHB 888 per person

10feb6:00 pm9:00 pmChinese New Year Dinner 2024 at Hyatt Regency Resort6:00 pm - 9:00 pm Hyatt Regency ResortType:DiningArea:KamalaPriceTHB 1,588

phuket town chinese shrine

Though Chinese New Year is not an official public holiday in Thailand, it’s a time of gathering and celebration for families. Red lanterns are strung up all around Phuket Town and at the local Chinese shrines. The streets of Phuket Old Town and its Sino-Portuguese heritage houses look especially magical this time of year.

phuket town chinese new year

Families gather to sweep out their homes, do merit-making activities and prepare feasts to clear out the old and make way for a more fortunate year ahead. Younger family members may eagerly await receiving an “Ang Pao” – a red envelope with money inside – from their elders. Firecrackers are set off to ward off any bad spirits and give a fresh start to the new year.

phuket chinese new year

It’s never easy to nail down exact dates and times of Chinese New Year festival activities in Phuket, but expect to see street parades with dragon and lion dance performers and food stalls along the Old Town roads, including Thalang, Dibuk Road, Phang Nga Road, Rassada Road and Soi Romanee.

Old Phuket Town

Chinese shrines around the island, including the large Jui Tui Shrine in Phuket Town, will be busy with merit-makers. Queen Sirikit Park near Limelight Mall will likely have live shows and exhibitions during the New Year festival.

jui tui shrine
Jui Tui Shrine

Many resorts and restaurants around Phuket will host special Chinese New Year events, usually a buffet dinner with a delectable choice of festive eats like suckling pig, duck, dim sum and other traditional Chinese dishes. Phuket’s beach clubs even join in the festivities with gala dinners and parties planned at such places as Xana Beach Club and Baba Beach Club.

chinese new year phuket

People wear red for good luck and to keep a festive and lively look during the festival. You’ll see much red and Chinese-themed clothing on sale at many shops before and during the New Year.

Wat Chalong Fair

Wat Chalong is not a Chinese temple, but every year, it hosts a large festival lasting ten days or more during the Chinese New Year.

Phuket Event Calendar

The temple grounds transform into a big open-air carnival with hundreds of food vendors, clothing stores, plant sellers and more shops setting up stands and some funfair games and rides, including a creaky-looking Ferris wheel. Each evening there are live shows on the outdoor stage, and the main temple hall is busy with families making merit.

A few days after the festival, Phuket Old Town will hold its annual Old Town Festival from January 30 to February 1. Each evening, Thalang Road and Soi Romanee will close to traffic, and the streets will come alive with food stalls, art and souvenirs for sale and musical performances.

phuket chinese shrine

The Thai Hua Museum is worth a visit during the festival as it offers insight into Phuket’s Chinese history and culture, from the early days of Chinese migration to the island in the 1800s to the present day.

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Willy Thuan

Born in France a long long time ago, I started to travel the world early until I settled in Phuket in 1994. For the past 30 years, my passion for photography and my curiosity have taken me to every corner of Phuket, Bangkok and everywhere I could go in Thailand. My goal is to share my discoveries, photos and tips to help travellers plan their holidays by making Phuket 101 as easy as possible to use for everyone!