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Jiuzhaigou Festival & Climate

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Overview
Chengdu has quite a variety of festivals and events spread throughout the year. Chengdu festivals and events range from the commercial, like the building materials and automobile events, to the scenic (e.g. Chengdu International Peach Blossom Festival), to the culinary (e.g. Chengdu Bakery Exhibition), to the traditional (e.g. Chengdu Lantern Festival).

Xinjin Dragon Boat Race
Xinjin is an ideal place for holding the Dragon Boat Festival due to its wide river, where there are model dragon performances and pleasure boat night cruises in addition to the traditional activities below.Xinjin Dragon Boat Races

Dragon boat races are very popular during the Dragon Boat Festival. Teams of ten in dragon boats wait on one side of the calm Min River (岷江 Min Jiang) in Xinjin. Then they row the boats with all their might to reach the other side of the river first, as the beating of gongs and drums resounds to the skies. Rowing against the current, thousands of tourists cheer them on.

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Eating Glutinous Rice
It's another tradition for the Chinese to eat glutinous rice bundles (粽子 zongzi /dzong-dz/) during the Dragon Boat Festival, which are not only nutritious, but also delicious. Zongzi are usually different from one area to another; both in shape and taste. In Xinjin the glutinous rice wrapped in leaves is often steamed with hen eggs, duck eggs, and goose eggs as fillings.

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Travel Essentials
Admission: free of charge

How to get there: You can take a bus from Chengdu Chengbei Bus Station to Xinjin County Town for 10 yuan, then take bus 401, 403, or 504 to the Min River.

Nearby Attractions: Chunyang Taoist Temple, Crane Forest Park, Baosen Mountain Forest Park, and Wujin Scenic Area

Lantern Festival in Chengdu
The Lantern Festival officially ends the Lunar New Year celebration in China. While the Lantern Festival is held throughout the country, one of the most popular celebrations takes place in Chengdu, the capital of southwest China’s Sichuan Province.

Chengdu's Lantern Festival Dates Back to the Tang Dynasty

Chengdu residents have lots of practice at throwing a good party. After all, they’ve been hosting a Lantern Festival since 711. The date of the festival, also known as Shangyuan, fluctuates annually, as it occurs on the 15th day of the first lunar month. It is usually sometime in February or late January. In 2014, it will take place on February 14.

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The Releasing Water Festival on Tomb Sweeping Day in Dujiangyan
The water releasing festival is a traditional folk custom festival in Dujiangyan City. It is annually held to commemorate the Dujiangyan Irrigation System's originators, Li Bing and his son, and to pray for good harvests on the Sichuan plain in the forthcoming year.

Mount Qingcheng and Dujiangyan Irrigation System was listed as a World Heritage Site in 2000.

Festival Activities

The Ancient Sacrificial Ritual
An ancient ritual is held at the beginning of the festival. An orator reads an ode to ancestors county head Li Bing and his son, who planned and managed the project in 256 BC. A sacred dance with national dress from the Warring States Period (475–221 BC) is performed, and offerings are burned as gifts to the ancestors.

The sacrificial ritual reflects local people's admiration, praise, and esteem towards their forefathers, which are held to be great virtues by Chinese people.

The Water Releasing Ceremony
The climax of the festival is the Water Releasing Ceremony, with a bamboo pole dance as the opening performance. After an official in an ancient costume, riding a horse, passes the message for the water releasing to begin, strong workers open the cofferdam to release the water.

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