Best Places to Celebrate the Lunar New Year in Los Angeles

The Lunar New Year (and Year of the Rooster) begins on Saturday, January 28, 2017.  Traditionally, people begin preparing weeks before the holiday starts by paying off their debts, passing out red envelopes, and cleaning their homes.  I’m hoping to make it out to some of these festivities this year.  The most notable ones are listed below in order of date.  Happy new year and hope to run into some of you guys at these events!


Lunar New Year Festivities 2017

Lunar New Year at Disneyland Ca Adventure

Photo credit: Disney Parks

Disneyland California Adventure Lunar New Year
Jan 20 to Feb 5, 2017
DCA will have performers & musicians, kids activities and specialty food items like Tsing Tao beer, ginger milk tear, and steamed pork bao. Look for photo ops with Mulan, Mushu, Mickey Mouse, and Minnie Mouse dressed up in traditional Lunar New Year garb.

For the first time, World of Color will also have a 6-minute pre-show called “Hurry Home,” the story of a little lantern on a journey home to join its Lantern family to celebrate the Lunar New Year. The show will feature animated appearances by Mulan and Mushu in “dream sequences” inspired by traditional Chinese paper cut-out style animation. The score will feature an original arrangement of the music created for the Grand Opening of Shanghai Disneyland.


Universal Studios Lunar New Year

Photo Credit: Universal Studios

Universal Studios Hollywood – Lunar New Year
Jan 21 – Feb 5, 2017
Po and Tigress from Kung Fu Panda are making their début. Face off with Mandarin-speaking Megatron from Transformers. Take pictures with Curious George and Woody Woodpecker, both dressed in traditional Chinese attire for the festivities. Plus, enjoy food and activities for this unique cultural experience.





Monterey Park Lunar New Year

Photo credit: Monterey Park Lunar New Year

Monterey Park Lunar New Year Festival

Saturday and Sunday Jan 21 10am-9pm, Jan 22 10am-7pm
Drawing crowds estimated at 50,000 to 100,000 visitors coming from all over the Southern California area, Monterey Park’s annual Chinese New Year Festival takes place in the downtown business district spanning 7 blocks, featuring 130 booths, firecrackers, a traditional Chinese Lion Dance, a Dragon Dance, and large carnival fun zone.




Photo credit: Port of Los Angeles

Downtown Harbor in San Pedro – Lunar New Year Festival
Saturday, Jan 21 2-7pm
Join the Port of Los Angeles for the 3rd annual Lunar New Year Festival on the LA Waterfront, held indoors this year at CRAFTED at the Port of Los Angeles. This free community event features a petting zoo, traditional dancers, Taiko drummers, face painting, arts and crafts, calligraphy and brush artistry, and a fireworks grand finale! A rain or shine event.




Photo credit: The Americana

The Americana at Brand
Sunday, Jan 22, 2017
Don’t miss the annual Lunar New Year extravaganza at The Americana: an action-packed celebration featuring vibrant lion and dragon dances, acrobats, cultural performances, red envelope giveaways (filled with surprises and special offers!), food stations, and tons of activities for the whole family, including face painting, balloon twisting, calligraphy and more. The event will close with a special performance by Culture Shock L.A.




Photo credit: Thien Hau Temple

Chuan Tien Hau Temple
Friday, Jan 27, 2017 10pm-Midnight
For a traditional celebration, head to Chinatown’s Chuan Thien Hau Temple to ring in the year at midnight. Attendees will present gifts to the deities, light up firecrackers to awaken the spirits and burn incense to welcome good fortune.  Lion dancers and Buddhist and Taoist monks will take part.





Photo credit: San Gabriel Sun

San Gabriel Lunar New Year Festival
Saturday, Jan 28, 2017 11am-10pm
The San Gabriel Lunar New Year Festival is unique in that it combines the traditional with the modern, creating a festival that is enjoyable for all. The festival will feature a 30’ outdoor stage with live performances, dance competition, food trucks, craft beer garden, kids zone, calligraphers, fortune tellers, chalk art contest, and art show to celebrate Asian cultures and the Lunar New Year. The festival will also feature newly designated areas such as Street Food Fair, Crafts Village and Dessert Land!




Pretend City Children’s Museum
Saturday, Jan 28, 2017 11-3pm
Come and learn about Chinese New Year celebrations through fun and festive activities. Activities throughout the day will include dragon art using little hands, storytime featuring “My First Chinese New Year” by Karen Katz followed by snacks of Tangerine and orange slices for good luck, a dragon parade and many more!  Activities are included with general admission.


Photo credit: CBS Los Angeles

Santa Monica Place
Saturday, Jan 28, 2017 2-6pm
Celebrate the new year hers with performances that include entertainment such as the traditional Chinese Lion Dance, Korean Fan Dance, a Chinese classical musical duo, stilt walkers, Chinese Dough Art and more!





Photo credit: Wolfgang Puck

Downtown LA – Ritz Carlton
Friday, Feb 3, 2017
Wolfgang Puck brings his traveling pop-up Night Market event back to The Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles in Nest at WP24. For $48, guests enjoy a signature Far East-inspired cocktail featuring herbs picked from the hotel’s rooftop garden and unlimited access to six different live cooking stations offering plates such as Chili “Dan Dan” dumplings, Whole Roasted Peking Duck, and other auspicious dishes. Guests are also treated to a dragon dance performance.




Photo credit: LA Dragon Parade

Chinatown – 118th Annual Golden Dragon Parade
Saturday, Feb 4, 2017 1pm

Celebrating over one hundred years of tradition, the Chinese Chamber of Commerce of Los Angeles included the Golden Dragon Parade to Chinese New Year celebrations beginning in the mid-1980’s. It boasts dozens of floats, marching bands, government officials, entertainers, local business leaders and cultural groups.  Don’t forget the food trucks and craft beer garden from local breweries.  For the kids, there’s face painting, storytelling and paper-folding. The Golden Dragon Parade makes its route at Hill and Ord Streets, concluding at Broadway and Cesar Chavez from 1-3pm.



Photo credit: Huntington Library

Huntington Library
Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 4–5,  2017 10am-5pm
Families can enjoy crowd-pleasing lion dancers, amazing performances from a mask-changing artist, plus choreographed martial arts demonstrations, Chinese music, food, and much more. The festivities will take place in and around the Chinese Garden and other performance spaces. All activities are included with general admission for free for Members.





Photo credit: Alhambra Chamber of Commerce

Alhambra Lunar New Year Celebration
Saturday, February 11, 2017 10am-5pm
Held on 5 city blocks on Valley Blvd. from Almansor St to Vega St there will be 250 booths to include a dragon boat rowing station, an auto square, children’s workshops, a health fair and cultural demonstrations, that give festival-goers with a taste of the Asian culture. Giveaways, fun games, and ethnic foods attract long lines of attendees. Young and old alike enjoy the exposure to Asian culture and strengthening of community ties this event affords.

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