Hong Kong’s Chung Yeung Festival is a special day of ancestor memorials.
|2018||17 Oct||Wed||Chung Yeung Festival|
|2019||7 Oct||Mon||Chung Yeung Festival|
According to the Chinese lunar calendar, this day falls on the ninth day of the ninth month. This is around early to mid-October in the western Gregorian calendar. It is a similar memorial day to Ching Ming and is commemorated in Hong Kong, China and Taiwan.
On Chung Yeung, families climb the hills to visit the graves of their ancestors. It has been a tradition for over 2000 years and came into being because Jing Huan, on the advice of a wise man, took his family into the mountains to visit his ancestors’ graves. Because he was away from his village, the family survived a mass slaughter of all in his village. Other legends also exist about the origin of Chung Yeung.
Today, it is a day of memorial. It is also a day of outings, family gatherings and picnics. Unfortunately, due to the large number of people going to the hills to visit graves, to offer burnt offerings and to have picnics, there is a higher incidence of hill fires getting out of control, even now when there are additional fireproof bins for hot ashes. Please be careful.
If Chung Yeung falls on a weekend, the following weekday is a public holiday. Chung Yeung is a day when tourist attractions, shops, restaurants and markets are open and in full swing. These are very crowded, especially if the date is on a Sunday, which is always busy in its own right.
Another fun tradition at Chung Yeung is the flying of kites. This is a source of entertainment for young families but has its roots in the sweeping aloft of bad luck. Many believe that bad luck will leave on the kite and not return to the earth.