For centuries, Lunar New Year, or Tet, also known as The Festival, is the largest traditional festival, the oldest, which has the widest range of popular, from Nam Quan to Ca Mau and the islands, as well as the most jubilant and bustle Festival of Vietnam. Lunar New Year is the first step and the most important festival in Vietnam festival system, that both the "ceremony" and the "festival" are very rich in content as well as all forms, brings a profound and intensive human values. Tet has played significant role in each Vietnamese’s life is not only because it is the occasion when people gather together, but also it is where traditional and invaluable customs stored, remained and passed from generations to generations.
1.Kitchen Gods Worshiping
From December 23rd in Lunar calendar, Vietnamese families has cleaned their kitchen to worship Kitchen Gods. This traditional ritual requires goldfish for the Gods to ride heaven, hoping they would report to Ngoc Hoang (the Greatest God) good things because according to folk notions this is the day Ngoc Hoang will punish or reward homeowners based on what the Kitchen Gods report to him.
2.Banh Chung (Chung Cake).
Banh Chung is a traditional dish of the Vietnamese that has existed along with the history. Right from the days 28, 29 of Tet, Vietnam families usually make Chung cakes as gifts for each other in the Holiday and to enjoy Tet. Making Chung Cake is one way to remember the ancestors, parents and reminiscent of the story of King Hung cocoon pro-code for a long time.
In Tet, Vietnamese people often buy flowers symbolizing for good lucks, namely peach, apricot, kumquat…to dispel evil spirits, simultaneously pray for a happy new year, happiness, prosperous and fulfilling for family.
Fruit tray presentation is also a custom indispensable in Tet of Vietnamese families. Fruit tray symbolizing for 5 elements of the universe (Metal, Wood, Water, Fire, Earth) with the concept of Confucianism with deep common sense, associated with the desired dutiful and good things will to the new year.
5.Greet ancestors’ lemurs.
Before New year Eve, Vietnamese people often prepare fruits, a feast offerings to offer to grandparents, in memory of the ancestors, origins, together review the memories of the old year, and wish for the coming new year.
Buds picked in early spring is a beauty in the traditional New Year's Day in Vietnam. The people of Vietnam are picking buds on the eve or morning to demand the first of a new year is always lucky and fullness, bringing fortune to the hosts of the house.
To first foot is a very important tradition of the people of Vietnam for their concept that who will be the first caller determining the new year would be happy, thriving or unlucky. Therefore, the hosts often invite people whose ages is believed “fit” the hosts’ because they believe that he will bring good luck, good omen throughout the year. The first caller must dress formally, then have to go all around the house for hoping luck will always be filled.
On the first day of Lunar New Year, the Vietnamese is customary to visit relatives, friends and acquaintances to give wishes. The most common wishes in Tet are Health, Happiness, Luck & Prosperity.
During Tet, Vietnamese people have the custom of presenting Lucky Money to children. Money would be put on red envelops symbolizing for luck, reunion, happy wishes for the New Year will come.
10.Expel former – greet new offers
The last day of the year, the Vietnamese have a tradition of sweeping, cleaning house, go shopping for furniture, new clothes. Adult offspring also give advises in which in the moment of transfer people should not quarrel, do not punish or make mistakes. Who has a dislike to each other also should throw them away, just celebrate together in what is good and lucky in the moments of New Year.
In the first day of the year, Vietnamese often choose nice time to depart with the hope that the coming year will be full of luck every time they step out of the house.
12.Visiting ancestral graves.
Children and grandchildren often visit ancestral graves from about 23 to 30 December in Lunar Calendar. They repair, clean their ancestors’ graves to express filial piety, simultaneously to invite ancestor’s spirits join the descendants.
First day of spring, children will write down the first word of the year, hang on calligraphy pictures for good luck and hope good things to happen in the new year.