Trung Thu – Mid-autumn Festival
This Trung Thu festival is a delightful time for children and most pleasant for the adults to watch. Many weeks before the festival, bakers are busy making hundreds of thousands of moon cakes of sticky rice and filled with all kinds of unusual filling such as peanuts, sugar, lotus seed, duck-egg yolks, raising, watermelon seed, etc. Normally, they are baked and sold in colourful boxes. In reality, expensive ones in ornate boxes are presented as gifts.
Also made in advance are colourful lanterns made in the form of boats, dragons, hares, toads, lobsters, unicorns, carp, etc. In fact, these are sold for weeks on the streets of every village and city. The children begin playing with them long before the holiday. They light little candles and place them inside the lanterns made of cellophane paper and swing them around on sticks, all in the darkness of the evening. Honestly, it is one of the most beautiful sights to see in Vietnam during the year.
On the night of the festival, children form a procession and go through the streets holding their lighted lanterns and performing the dances of the unicorn to the accompaniment of drums and cymbals.
There are many legendary origins of the festival, but the one most accepted in Vietnam is that it began during the reign of Emperor Minh Hoang of the Duong Dynasty. Legend says that he took his empress, Duong Quy Pho, to a lake called Thai Dick on the 15th day of the 8th lunar month where they admired the moon. When the moon was at its brightest, the Emperor composed a poem and explained it to his wife. In fact, he loved to read the verses in the moonlight.
Moon cakes were supposedly used at other times in Chinese history. Secret messages were placed inside the cakes to inform the people of a revolt to be held against a hated ruler during one of the many internal wars in China.
Other Popular (Typical) Festivals, Holidays & Recreation In Vietnam
– Vietnamese Tet Nguyen Dan
– Hai Ba Trung Day
– Thanh Minh, Holiday Of The Dead
– Doan Ngu (Opening Ceremony Of Summer)
– The Whale Festival
– Trung Nguyen (Wandering Souls’ Day)
– Recreation Activities