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Home Guizhou Travel Guide Guizhou Ethnic Festivals: the Best Minority Culture Experiences in China

Guizhou Ethnic Festivals: the Best Minority Culture Experiences in China

Located in southwest China, Guizhou is a province with diverse ethnic minority groups, including Miao, Dong, Yi, Buyi, Tujia, and more. The minorities celebrate many festivals in their own ways, through which you can catch a glimpse of their culture and traditions on your Guizhou tours. Below are the most popular ethnic festivals in Guizhou.

 

1. Miao Sisters’ Meal Festival (March 15-17 in Chinese Lunar Calendar)

Celebrated by the Miao people from March 15 to 17 in the Chinese lunar calendar, the Miao Sisters’ Meal Festival is one of the most famous ethnic festivals in Guizhou. During the festival, Miao girls make colorful rice and give the rice to each other to pray for good luck and prosperity.

Besides, there will be activities and performances to celebrate the festival, including bullfighting, Lusheng dance, competition of Miao songs, and costume shows. Miao Sisters’ Meal Festival is one of the most interesting minority festivals in Guizhou, never miss it on your Guizhou tours.

Guizhou Miao Sisters Meal Festival
Miao Sisters Meal Festival

2. Miao Dragon Boat Festival (May 24-27 in Chinese Lunar Calendar)

On May 24-27 in the Chinese lunar calendar every year, the Miao community in the southeastern region of Guizhou celebrates the Miao Dragon Boat Festival, which is also one of the traditional Guizhou ethnic festivals for Miao ethnic groups, especially for Miao people of Taijiang County. Over 60 Miao villages, with about 60,000 people celebrating the festival and engaging in canoe dragon boat racing, make the villages bustling.

 

3. Miao New Year Festival

Miao New Year Festival is one of the most solemn ethnic festivals in Guizhou. It is usually celebrated in October or November in the Chinese lunar calendar. During this festival, Miao people will do cleaning, butcher pigs and sheep for feasts, and worship their ancestors. Families gather and dine together, stay up late, and set fireworks to welcome the “New Year’s Dragon.”

Also, it’s a great time for young people to develop a romantic relationship. Young women, who dress up and wear silver earrings and bracelets, dance along with the Lusheng songs performed by young men. Also, they sing folk songs to each other to express love.

Miao New Year Festival in Leishan
Miao New Year Festival in Leishan

4. Miao Lusheng Festival

Miao Lusheng Festival is one of the most popular and big ethnic festivals in Guizhou Miao ethnic minorities. It mainly features activities like Lusheng Caitang and Lusheng racing. Except for the Lusheng dance, there are many other activities, including mountain climbing, bullfighting, horse racing, and more. The celebration time differs among different places as they have various origins of the festival.

 

5. Dong New Year Festival

Being one of the most important ethnic festivals in Guizhou, the Dong New Year is mainly celebrated in the last season of the year. During this festival, the Dong people worship ancestors, celebrate the harvest, and present Dong culture. Besides, there is an important ceremony in this festival, named Dousha, which is a way of singing ancestor worship songs and a form of cultural heritage. You can visit Dong ethnic groups on your tour of Guizhou and experience the traditions in person.

 

6. Torch Festival (June 24-27 in Chinese Lunar Calendar)

Among Guizhou ethnic minority festivals, the Torch Festival is mainly celebrated by the Yi people. They wish to use fire to get rid of pests and protect the crops. During the festival, people make torches with dried pine woods and pine nuts and set them on fire at night. Besides, young men and women sing and dance around the huge torch for the whole night. Furthermore, there are horse racing, archery competitions, wrestling contests, and tug of war, which make the festival more enjoyable.

Guizhou Torch Festival
Torch Festival

Guizhou Ethnic Festivals Calendar 2024

Festivals Ethnic

Groups

Date of

Lunar Calendar

Date of Solar Calendar Location Celebration Activities
Sisters Meal Festival Miao Mar. 15-17 Apr. 23-25 Taijiang Singing, Lusheng dance, and meeting
April 8th Festival Miao Apr. 8 May. 15 Huangping County Singing, Lusheng dance, Horse racing, and bull fighting
Dragon Boat Festival Miao May. 25 Jun. 30 Taijiang Dragon boat racing, singing, and dancing
Lusheng Festival Miao Jan. 19 Feb. 28 Zhouxi Town, Kaili City Singing, Lusheng dance, and bullfighting
Miao Sep.24-26 Oct. 26-28 Chong’an Town Singing, Lusheng dance, and bullfighting
Miao Sep. 27 Oct. 29 Huangping County Singing, Lusheng dance, and bullfighting
Miao New Year Festival Miao Oct. 7 Nov. 7 Leishan Town, Kaili City Singing, dancing, and meeting
March 3rd Festival Buyi March. 3 Apr. 11 Baojing Town, Zhenyuan County Singing, Lusheng dance, and meeting
June 6th Festival Buyi Jun. 6 Jul. 11 Zhenfeng County Singing, whistling on leaves
Mao Festival Shui Jun. 6 Jul. 11 Jiuqian Town, Sandu County Dancing, singing, and horse racing
Dong New Year Festival Dong Nov. 1 Dec. 1 Kaili City Singing, dancing, and meeting
Torch Festival Yi Jun. 24-27 Jul. 29 – Aug. 1 Weining in Bijie City Horse racing, archery competitions, and wrestling contests

 

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