Activities during Dragon Boat Festival in Shanghai

created: 2013-06-09

Shanghai Daily, June 8, 2013 

Scenic spots around Shanghai will hold festive activities to mark the Dragon Boat Festival that falls on June 12 this year.

The Shanghai Botanic Garden in Xuhui District will teach visitors to make sachets filled with insect-repellent herbs, a tradition since ancient times, and to wrap glutinous rice with reed leaves into dumplings called zongzi.

The Binjiang Forest Park along the coast of Pudong District will hold a zongzi-making contest. People are encouraged to learn skills from zongzi grannies and join the competition for fun.

In the Chocolate Happy Land, also in Pudong, visitors can pose with "Qu Yuan", the exiled patriot and beloved poet in ancient China who committed suicide in 278BC by jumping into a river, hence the tradition of boat races in memory of the failed rescue and rice dumplings thrown into the river so that fish won't touch his corpse.

At the Shanghai Ocean Aquarium, tourists are invited to guess the number of zongzi hidden in the home of an Eagle Ray and win prizes. They can also participate in other interactive games in the aquarium.

The Happy Valley in Songjiang District will hold a Han-style fashion show, inviting visitors to wear traditional Chinese clothes and relive the heydays of the Han Dynasty.

The festival is also a time when the Chinese traditionally hang pest-repellent grass on their doors and wear sachets filled with aromatic herbs to pray for good luck and prevention of diseases.


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