Chinese New Year activities

The year of the snake will start on Sunday 10th February and over the 15 days of the Spring Festival a wide range of China focused activities are taking place.

On Friday evening 8 Feb if you are in the west of Scotland, head to the Main Gate at Glasgow University to catch a Dragon Dance from 17.45-18.00 – as long as the weather is dry!

If you are in the east of Scotland join us to make Chinese New Year decorations at our Friday evening Chinese Corner 17.30-19.00.

Feeling suitability celebratory then just choose which of the many events below will form part of your Chinese New Year programme of activities.


  • The free annual Edinburgh Chinese Community School Chinese New Year fair with performances (including Lion Dance), art & crafts, fun and games and festive food stalls runs at Liberton High School from 12.30-15.30
  • Glasgow`s Burrell Collection will run specially guided sessions in the Chinese Gallery from 1400-1600.
  • Attic Salt, Edinburgh is holding an exhibition which will run on Saturdays and Sundays only from now till 24th February. Entitled `The Forbidden City`, it features the former Imperial Palace in Beijing in a series of photographic collages by David McKinnon who travelled to China in 2012. Click here for website.
  • St Andrews Museum
    The ‘Steep Trail’ – An exhibition of new work in a range of media from four artists, two from Scotland and two from China. Inspired by early environmentalist John Muir`s visit to China. 1030-1600. Runs till 3 MarchAddress: St Andrews Museum ,Kinburn Park, Doubledykes Road, St Andrews, KY16 9DP


  • Edinburgh Zoo has some special events to help the pandas feel at home by celebrating the Chinese New Year. Enjoy a range of Chinese arts and crafts from the Confucius Institute for Scotland, as well as the chance to get up close and personal with some snakes as the Zoo welcomes the Year of the Snake. 1100-1500. Activities are free with Zoo entry.
  • Glasgow`s Burrell Collection in Pollock Park will host a special showing of the Disney film `Mulan`. Showing from 1400.

Forres, Morayshire 11-17 February

  • For the second year, the town of Forres in Morayshire, working with the Shen Foundation , is holding a wide variety of Chinese New Year events, including a lion dance, an exhibition of Chinese art and antiques, a film night, language lessons, tea tasting and much more.

Takeway China 12 February onwards

  • Takeaway China 2013 organised by Ricefield Chinese Arts & Cultural Centre in Glasgow will launch their celebratory programme on 12 February with an evening of entertainment in Merchant Square, Glasgow from 1800 onwards. The programme of activity running in February (and some exhibitions into march) includes a photographic exhibition at Street Level gallery, children`s folk art from Jiangsu Province, and workshops on calligraphy, palm of the hand stories, tai chi, lantern making and Chinese comics. For more details, please visit the Takeway China website.

13 February

  • The Edinburgh branch of the Scotland China Association will hold its annual Chinese New Year dinner at Karen`s Unicorn Restaurant, St Leonard`s Street, Edinburgh(18.30 for 19.00). The evening which cost £22 for the meal and Chinese tea is open to members, partners, friends and colleagues but advance booking is required.
  • The University of Strathclyde will hold a special three part evening comprising a talk/demonstration entitled ‘Red, Yellow, Blue, Black and White: The Mystery of Colour in Ancient Chinese Costumes before an introductory academic paper is given on the film which will follow – Unknown Pleasures18.00-21.00, Room LT2.09, Livingston Tower, University of Strathclyde.

Please visit this website for more details of the above event

15 February Confucius Institute for Scotland

  • Our own annual Spring Festival party will take place from 1800-2100. Designed to allow Institute and University students and friends to gather and celebrate the Spring Festival with home made entertainment, karaoke, mah-jong and of course a taste of jiaozi please email us on to request a place.

19 February The University of Edinburgh

  • The University of Edinburgh will run a special three part evening event from 18.00-21.00 comprising a talk on Chinese festival dances along with a demonstration of New Year icons, ornaments and symbols before an introductory academic paper will be given on the film which follows `Ermo`. This event will be held in the Languages and Humanities Centre in the basement of the David Hume Tower. Please visit this website for more details of the above event.

23 February Spring Festival Ceilidh

  • The Edinburgh Chinese Association of Professionals and the Scotland China Assocation`s Ceilidh dancing party with live music to celebrate Chinese New Year and the Lantern Festival will take place between 19.00 and 20.00 in the Main Hall, North Merchiston club,48 Watson Crescent, Edinburgh EH11 1EP. Tickets are £7.00 pounds/person including soft drink and snacks. Please email Xiao Yang Li ( for more details.

The list is sourced from a range of organisations and individuals to whom many thanks.If you would like your event added please just send an email to us via the contact us page of our website.

Meanwhile – Xin Nian Kuai Le! / Happy New Year!