Vietnamese New Year is also called Tet. It falls on February 10th in 2024. Vietnamese people enjoy a 7-day national public holiday from February 9th (Tet Eve) to February 14th, 2024.
Vietnamese New Year is the most important festival of the year in Vietnam, celebrating love, the start of spring, and the best of hopes for the new year. It is observed on the first day of the first month of the Vietnamese Lunar Calendar and ranges between late January and mid-February on the Gregorian calendar.
Lunar year 2024 is a year of the Dragon on the Vietnamese zodiac, from February 10th, 2024 to January 28th, 2025. Cat is the fourth sign in Vietnamese Zodiac, taking place of the Rabbit in Chinese Zodiac.
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How Long Does Vietnamese New Year Last in 2024?
Though the public holiday lasts only 6 days, local celebrations usually last around 20 days from 'Minor New Year' or 'Kitchen God Day' (February 2nd in 2024) to Tet Nguyen Tieu — 'First Full Moon of the Year' (February 24th, 2024).
Here are the main celebrations and dates, outlined for you to have a general idea of how the Vietnamese people celebrate this most popular festival.
February 2nd in 2024: House Cleaning and a Feast
House cleaning and feasting take place on the 23rd day of the last lunar month, which is called 'Kitchen God Day'.
In Vietnamese culture, there are three deities (God of the Kitchen, God of the Land and House, and God of the Market) in charge of people's homes and property. The 23rd of the twelfth lunar month is the date for the three deities to go to Heaven for their annual report and prayers for the coming year. They then come back to Earth on New Year's Eve and resume their protective duties for the new year.
On this day, Vietnamese households clean their houses and prepare a tray of traditional offerings as a farewell.
February 5th to 7th in 2024: Making Chung Cake
Chung cake is made from the 26th to the 28th day of the last lunar month.
Chung Cake is a traditional and irreplaceable Vietnamese New Year food. They are square cakes made of glutinous rice, pork meat, and green beans and wrapped in bamboo or banana leaves.
Square is traditionally thought of as the shape of Earth in some Asian cultures (Heaven being round).
Vietnamese people make Chung cake to express their gratitude to their ancestors and their homeland.
Read more about typical Vietnamese food...
February 9th in 2024: Vietnamese New Year's Eve
It is on the last day of Vietnam's last lunar month.
New Year's Eve on Vietnam's lunar calendar is a day for finishing off the events of the past year, preparing for the new year, as well as family gatherings.
- House cleaning: This is a must to sweep away any bad luck of the old year. Cleaning in the first three days of the new year is not allowed, as it is thought to drive away Thần Tài (the God of Luck, in charge of a family's wealth for each coming year).
- Home decoration: The most popular items are flowers, trees, and small red ornaments.
- Cleaning altars and setting offerings: An altar represents the family ancestors' home or entrance door to Earth, hence cleaning of ancestral altars and offerings placed there are to please ancestral spirits.
- New Year's Eve Feast: Family members share stories of the past year and their hopes for new year, while eating special New Year food together.
- Giving red envelopes to children and seniors: Red is the auspicious color for New Year and red envelopes are a way of wishing the young and old good luck.
- Watching the New Year TV show and fireworks
February 10th in 2024: Vietnamese New Year's Day, Visiting Fathers' Relatives
It is the first day of Vietnam's first lunar month.
Vietnamese New Year's Day is the time Vietnamese visit relatives on their father's side. For wives and young children, this means the husband's/father's father and his relatives.
February 11th in 2024: Visiting Relatives on Mother Side
On the second day of Vietnam's first lunar month, Vietnamese people visit their (husband's/father's) maternal relatives.
February 12th to 14th in 2024: Visiting Teachers, Friends, Other Relatives, and Neighborhoods
Other relatives and old friends in childhood localities are visited from the third to the fifth day of Vietnam's first lunar month.
February 24th in 2024: Tet Nguyen Tieu — First Full Moon
The 15th day of Vietnam's first lunar month is the day of the First Full Moon of the New Year, which is very important for Vietnamese cultural and religious life. On Tết Nguyen Tieu, Vietnamese eat vegetarian food and plain water for purification.
Other activities include:
- Going to a pagoda to pray for good luck in the new year
- Flower vehicle parades, dragon and lion dancing, and lantern shows on the streets
Vietnamese New Year is a Public Holiday — Tet Holiday
Vietnamese New Year is a national public holiday called the Tết Holiday, usually lasting 5–7 days. It is the biggest and longest holiday in Vietnam. In 2024, the holiday lasts 7 days from February 8th to 14th.
Many shops, government offices, and banks, close during Tết Holiday. Employees working during the Tết holiday are entitled to 300% of their normal daily salary.
Is the Vietnamese New Year date the same as Chinese New Year's?
Vietnamese New Year is celebrated on the same date as Chinese New Year. Both are based on the same lunisolar calendar. In 2024, it falls on Sunday February 10th.
But Vietnamese people celebrate New Year with different customs, celebrations, and traditions from China.
Vietnamese New Year Dates 2024–2030
Vietnamese New Year (Tết) is based on their lunisolar calendar that gives a varying date in January/February, and each Lunar New Year marks the start of a new zodiac sign year, shown below:
|Vietnamese New Year 2024||February 10th||Year of the Dragon|
|Vietnamese New Year 2025||January 29th||Year of the Snake|
|Vietnamese New Year 2026||February 17th||Year of the Horse|
|Vietnamese New Year 2027||February 6th||Year of the Goat|
|Vietnamese New Year 2028||January 26th||Year of the Monkey|
|Vietnamese New Year 2029||February 13th||Year of the Chicken|
|Vietnamese New Year 2030||February 3rd||Year of the Dog|
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