Not quite sure what to do this weekend with the family to celebrate Dragon Boat Festival? We have some inspiration to get you started. Dragon Boat celebrations wouldn’t be the same without zongzi making, familiarizing yourself with Chinese traditional snacks and the history behind them, as well as going to see a Dragon Boat race on one of the many scenic rivers in Beijing and the surrounding areas. Take a look at the activities we’ve picked out for you and the family to enjoy.
Chinese Zongzi Dumpling Workshop, Jun 7
It’s time for you and the family to immerse yourself in some traditional Chinese culture to celebrate Dragon Boat Festival. You and the family can refine your zongzi dumpling making skills and partake in some traditional Chinese snacks at the Riviera Club this Saturday. Zongzi are traditional sticky rice parcels, made with fruit and wrapped in bamboo leaf.
Traditionally used to worship the ancestors and divinities, zongzi is now a popular snack usually enjoyed during Dragon Boat Festival to commemorate the patriotic poet, Qu Yuan, who drowned himself in protest in a river and was later paid homage to by preparing and throwing zongzi into rivers on the day of his sacrifice. There are limited places, so book now. For further information and registration contact: 8450 6888. All ages. Free June 7. 2-3pm. The Riviera Clubhouse, Shunyi.
Dragon Boat Festival Open House Party, Jun 7
Black Sesame Kitchen and The Courtyard Institute are inviting families to an afternoon of Chinese food, zongzi wrapping, and traditional activities. There will be lots of arts and crafts, tasty snacks, and rice dumplings. Black Sesame Kitchen has long been one of my favorite spots to enjoy communal dining and cooking classes. Families can look forward to enjoying this weekend’s celebration in the comfort of a beautiful Chinese courtyard, and in the company of an exceptional team of people who have a real passion for China and its cuisine. This one is perfect for parents and their little ones. All ages. RMB 150 ages 4 and up, children 3 and under free). 10-2pm. Black Sesame Kitchen, 28 Zhong Lao Hutong, Dongcheng District.
Old Summer Palace, Jun 7
I love the Summer Palace, its regal setting and atmosphere, and of course its beautiful lake surrounded by historic buildings and nature. Beautifully scenic and traditional, it is the perfect setting for the family to soak in some sun and boat racing this weekend. You will be able to watch a selection of national and international sport club teams race along the river while you munch down on a family picnic and cheer! All Ages. Free (RMB 5 park entrance fee). June 7. 9-12pm. Old Summer Palace.
Olympic Park, Jun 8
Take the family for a day out at Olympic Park to see beautifully hand-painted Dragon Boats race along the river. There will be the beating of drums and the cries of local sport teams from Beijing International Sports Club as they battle it out on the water. You can take a walk along the river or pick a spot to watch the boats at your leisure as the world goes by. Let’s hope for blue skies and lots of sunshine. All Ages. Free. June 8. 9-12pm. Olympic Park, Water Park Side.
Nordic Dragon Boat Tournament, Jun 15
A selection of Nordic Dragon Boat teams will be inviting you to follow the exciting events of a race between 20 teams from the Nordic community in Beijing, as they race it out for the title of Nordic Champion. This will be the second annual Nordic Dragon Boat Tournament, and is set to once more be the ultimate team challenge. Bus transportation will be provided for all teams and spectators to and from the Grand Canal in Tongzhou. Buses will be leaving from Liangmaqiao at 7.15 – 7.45am. Tickets can be purchased for transport-only spectators, or those who would like to enjoy the breakfast provided. The event is a joint effort organized by SwedCham, the Danish Chamber of Commerce, the Finnish Business Council, and the Norwegian Business Association. All ages. Free (No breakfast or transportation) RMB 100 (Including breakfast and transportation) RMB 50 (Including transportation). June 15. 9-1pm. The Grand Canal, Tongzhou.
Photos: courtesy of organizers, Pixabay, Weixin