Chinese New Year Guide 2015


Welcome to the year of the goat. Or is it the sheep? There’s a little confusion over the translation of the word “yang”, but either way we’re sure it’s going to be a baaaa-d ass year.

When it comes to new year’s celebration, we (we’re speaking on behalf of Sydney here) like to think we throw a pretty killer party. Let’s face it, our Sydney Harbour fireworks are world class. But even we will admit Chinese New Year celebrations kinda put us to shame. They do have 15 days dedicated to ringing in the new year after all. Need more proof? Here’s where you can catch all the action in Sydney.

Happy Chinese New Year! 

The Lanterns of Terracotta Warriors


If you walked past Dawes Point you’d think VIVD had come early this year. On display between dusk and midnight you’ll find life-size warrior lanterns, inspired by the Terracotta Warriors in Shaanxi, China, made from fabric and wire and lit up like a technicolour rainbow. As if the colourful array of regimented lanterns wasn’t cool enough, these sculptures were originally created for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. Hurry, they’re only gracing our harbourside until February 22. 

Terracotta Warrior Lanterns
Dawes Point NSW 2000
Until 22 February, from dusk til midnight daily

Lunar Markets


Hawker style food markets, now you’re talking our language! The Lunar Markets have taken over Pyrmont Bay Park in a celebration of Asian cuisine and culture. From New Year banquets to simple street food tastings across the selection of stalls plus nightly entertainment and two bars, it’s where you can discover up-and-coming talent (there’s lots of new Asian restaurants on location, showing us what they’ve got) and of course, feed your face.

For more on the Lunar Markets, head here

Din Tai Fung’s CNY Menu

Since it’s the year of the sheep, don’t you think it would be cool if you could get dumplings shaped like sheep. Oh wait, you can. Din Tai Fung’s special edition Chinese New Year menu features sweet lunar lamb buns (see main image!), pork buns, vegetarian buns, black sesame buns and their signature lychee mint drink. Gosh that drink is good. The special edition lunar lamb buns are only available at some of the Din Tai Fung restaurants. If you like your dumplings with 360 degree panoramic views of Sydney you should probably get yours from the Din Tai Fung pop-up at Sydney Tower Eye’s Observation Deck.

Din Tai Fung Pop-up
Sydney Tower Eye’s Observation Deck, 100 Market Street, Sydney 2000
Open daily from 19-22 February at 11:30am-2pm and 5:30-8:30pm 

Dragon Boat Racing

Grab your oars and make your way to the annual Dragon Boat Races. Continuing the 2,000+ year old tradition of Dragon Boat racing, Darling Harbour will see these ancient boats battle it out. The boats aren’t your ordinary rowing boat – they have a carved dragon head and tail, a hull painted with dragon scales, and paddles to represent the claws. Plus beating drums. We think they’re there to make the boat go faster. 

Dragon Boat Races
Cockle Bay, Darling Harbour 
Saturday 28 February, 9am-4pm and Sunday 1 March, 9am-3pm

Lan Yu Couture Fashion Show


A moment for fashion, if you please. Lan Yu is one of China’s leading couture fashion designers and the first Asian designer to present an individual collection show at MBFWA. Her garments are stunning pieces of art and right not they’re on display at Westfield Sydney. Showcasing more than $1million worth of exquisite gowns direct from Lan Yu’s Paris Couture show, the exhibition is a must-see from now until 1st March.

Lan Yu Exhibition
Opposite Bottega Veneta, Level 3, Westfield Sydney, Sydney 2000
12 February – 1 March

The Great Gift Exchange



It’s tradition to give foodie sweets at Chinese New Year and who are we to complain. For something moorish we can’t go past a MakMak macaron. If sugar highs are not your thing then give the gift of a luxury scotch whisky, which also happens to come in a limited edition bottle. It’s win win.

MakMak Macarons
601 King Street, Newtown 2042

Johnnie Walker’s Blue Label Year of the Ram Special Release
Available at Dan Murphy’s

About the author

Lisa used to use Sydney as a base to drop off souvenirs before heading off on the next adventure but these days she’s got her feet almost on the ground, with a desire to try every high tea in Sydney, and a cute cavoodle puppy at home. Travel writer, photographer and Kitchen Aid freak, she loves to eat, bake and write.


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