Celebrate Lunar New Year in Los Angeles

Welcome the Year of the Rabbit with festivals, shopping and dining specials

Traditional lion dancers performing on the streets of Chinatown in Downtown LA
Traditional lion dancers in Chinatown | Photo: Ruben Chairez - Los Angeles Chinatown Firecracker Run, Facebook

Based on the traditional Chinese calendar, Lunar New Year is one of the biggest holidays of the year in China, in countries with Chinese cultural influence, and in global cities with large Chinese populations like Los Angeles.

One of the most diverse cities in the world, LA celebrates the Lunar New Year with the famed Golden Dragon Parade, lively festivals, and great shopping and restaurant specials. The Lunar New Year is not only a time for family gatherings, but is also a time to honor ancestors and give thanks. Lavish meals loaded with "lucky" dishes, stuffed red envelopes and thunderous firecrackers are all part of the ancient tradition.

Ring in the Year of the Rabbit at Lunar New Year festivities and specials across Los Angeles.

Thien Hau Temple
Thien Hau Temple Interior | Photo: Grace Lennon, Dunn-Edwards Paints

Midnight Temple Ceremony - Thien Hau Temple (Jan. 21-22, 2023)

Downtown LA's historic Chinatown ignites the Year of the Rabbit with the Midnight Temple Ceremony, taking place at Thien Hau Temple from 10 p.m. on Saturday, January 21 to 12:30 a.m. on Sunday, January 22. Participants make offerings to deities and burn incense for good fortune, traditional lion dancers will perform, and 500,000 firecrackers will scare away evil spirits for an auspicious start to the new year.

Golden Dragon Parade in Chinatown
Golden Dragon Parade in Chinatown | Photo: Chinese Chamber of Commerce

Golden Dragon Parade (Jan. 28, 2023)

The highlight of Chinatown's Lunar New Year festivities, the 124th Annual Golden Dragon Parade is taking place from 1pm to 5pm on Saturday, January 28. For generations, tens of thousands of spectators have lined the route to view the parade, which features floats, marching bands, entertainers, local business leaders and cultural groups. Previous Grand Marshals include everyone from martial arts legend Bruce Lee to Garrett Wang of Star Trek fame. Admission to the Golden Dragon Parade is free.

Kiddie Run at the L.A. Chinatown Firecracker
Kiddie Run at the L.A. Chinatown Firecracker | Photo: Jonathan Friolo

L.A. Chinatown Firecracker (Feb. 18-19, 2023)

The Los Angeles Chinatown Firecracker is the largest and longest-running Lunar New Year charity run in the United States. The 45th Annual Firecracker is taking place the weekend of February 18 and 19.

Events include the flagship 5/10K Run/Walk on February 19; 20/40 mi Bike Ride (Feb. 18), Kiddie Run (Feb. 19) and PAW’er Dog Walk (Feb. 18). Proceeds from L.A. Chinatown Firecracker are donated to local elementary schools and non-profit organizations.

Registration is now open for all ages and includes an opening ceremony with lion dancers and traditional lighting of 100,000 firecrackers; t-shirt for your selected event; custom lanyard and finisher medal; and a goodie bag.

Chinese Calligraphy workshop at the Central Library
Chinese Calligraphy workshop at the Central Library | Photo: LAPL

Central Library (Jan. 21, 2023)

Several branches of the Los Angeles Public Library are hosting Lunar New Year events, including the landmark Central Library in Downtown LA, which is featuring activities from 11am to 3pm on Saturday, January 21.

The library's schedule includes a Chinese Calligraphy workshop at 11am; Japanese Koto performance (1pm), Creative Dance workshop (1:30pm), The Art of Kitsuke (kimono dressing) at 1:30pm; and a Cambodian Blessing Dance at 2pm.

Stop by the Octavia Lab from 12:30pm to 3pm and decorate a complimentary tote bag with one of three designs: a rabbit representing the Chinese Zodiac; a cat from the Vietnamese Zodiac; and a Lakhon Khol Cambodian dancer. While supplies last.

For more info about Lunar New Year, visit the LAPL website.

Poon Choy at Hop Woo in Chinatown
Poon Choy at Hop Woo | Instagram: @hopwoola

Hop Woo (Jan. 18-25, 2023)

Celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2023, Hop Woo is offering several Lunar New Year to-go specials with traditional lucky dishes.

Priced at $168, Poon Choy feeds six people and includes braised pig feet, braised pig tongue, braised dried oyster, roast pork, roast duck, Chinese chicken, braised shiitake mushroom, tofu skin, and fat choy (black moss). Add abalone and shrimp for $70. Other specials include Braised Dried Oyster, Braised Pig Feet, and two options for Whole Roast Pig - the 20 lb Suckling Pig feeds 12-18, and the 60-70 lb Roast Pig feeds about 40.

50% in-person deposit required for all items. Order Lunar New Year specials 2+ days in advance, and Whole Roast Pig at least five days ahead.

Whole Dry Aged Duck & Astrea Caviar at RiceBox
Whole Dry Aged Duck & Astrea Caviar | Photo: RiceBox

RiceBox (Jan. 21, 2023)

Located in the Spring Arcade Building, RiceBox is a contemporary Cantonese BBQ restaurant from the husband-wife duo of Leo and Lydia Lee.

For Lunar New Year, RiceBox is offering a luxurious Duck & Caviar to-go special: Whole Dry Aged Duck and 50g Astrea Caviar; Wrappers, Sauce, Green Onions and Cucumbers; and a RiceBox Steam Basket. Pricing is $268, pre-order online for pickup from 10am to 3pm on January 21.

LA Zoo Lights Kaleidoscope
Photo: LA Zoo Lights

Lunar New Year Nights - LA Zoo (Jan. 6-22, 2023)

One of the Los Angeles Zoo's most popular annual events has been reimagined for the 2022-23 season! LA Zoo Lights: Animals Aglow features an immersive landscape filled with spectacular lantern sculptures of animals among blooming flowers, towering trees, and more for a wildlife-centered experience that’s as inspiring as it is breathtaking.

Lunar New Year Nights showcases spectacular Chinese cultural performances by Wushu Shaolin Entertainment on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights. Performances (15-20 minutes) throughout the night in Treetops Terrace, along with Café Vietnam and Rice Balls of Fire food trucks. For the full schedule and to purchase tickets, visit the LA Zoo Lights website.

Martial arts demo during the Lunar New Year Celebration at The Original Farmers Market
Lunar New Year Celebration | Photo: The Original Farmers Market

Lunar New Year Celebration - The Original Farmers Market (Feb. 4, 2023)

The annual Lunar New Year Celebration at The Original Farmers Market is taking place in the Plaza on Saturday, February 4 from 2-4pm. The festivities include lion dances, arts & crafts, balloon twisting and red envelope giveaways.

Whole Peking Duck at Merois
Whole Peking Duck at Merois | Instagram: @tastyduck

Merois (Jan. 27-28, 2023)

Perched on the rooftop of the Pendry West Hollywood, Wolfgang Puck's Merois is serving a five-course Lunar New Year Menu featuring the legendary chef's signature Asian-inspired cuisine. Dinner starts with an amuse of Duck Broth Consommé with Smoked Mushroom Wonton. For the table, the first course offers King Crab Bao Bun, Chanterelle Spring Roll, Steamed Prawn Shumai and Snake River Farms Pork Belly. Entrée selections include Barrel-Aged Soy-Marinated Black Cod, Whole Maine Lobster, Star Anise Braised Short Rib, or Whole Peking Duck for Two. Sides for the table include Kung Pao Cauliflower and Roast Pork Fried Rice.

Pricing for the prix fixe menu is $165 per person and includes live entertainment. Seatings from 5:30pm to 10:30pm, reservations at SevenRooms.

Switch WeHo Lunar New Year 2023
Switch WeHo Lunar New Year 2023

Switch WeHo - Micky's (Jan. 21, 2023)

Switch WeHo presents a special Lunar New Year Edition of its monthly QTAPI event, featuring Miss Shu Mai, VJ Jason Lin (Top 40, Dance, Pop, K-pop, EDM), VJ Vu Tran (Top 40 Mashups, Pop Dance, Hip Hop, Tech House) with special guests and performances. The event runs from 9pm to 2:30am - guests are invited to stay for Micky’s After Hours from 2:30am to 4am.

Korean fan dancer performs in the Lunar New Year Festival at the Port of Los Angeles
Korean fan dancer in the Lunar New Year Festival | Photo: Port of Los Angeles

Lunar New Year Festival - Port of Los Angeles (Jan. 21, 2023)

The Port of Los Angeles presents the 9th Annual Lunar New Year Festival, taking place from 3pm to 7pm on Saturday, January 21 at the Cabrillo Way Marina in San Pedro. The free community event includes entertainment, lion dancers, food and a festive finale.

Lunar New Year celebration at Citadel Outlets
Lunar New Year celebration | Photo: Citadel Outlets

Lunar New Year Celebration - Citadel Outlets (Jan. 13 - Feb. 13, 2023)

Ring in the Year of the Rabbit during the annual Lunar New Year Celebration at Citadel Outlets, located minutes from Downtown LA and well-known for selling premium brands at deep discounts.

From January 13 through February 13, shoppers will enjoy festive red and gold lanterns, twinkling lights and an authentic pagoda decorating Center Court. The weekend of January 21-22, the center hosts traditional lion dances that will bring good luck and fortune. Be sure to stop by Customer Service to pick up a lucky red envelope with gift cards and promotions from participating stores.

Lunar New Year at Santa Monica Place
Lunar New Year | Photo: Santa Monica Place

Santa Monica Place (Jan. 28, 2023)

Santa Monica Place presents a family-friendly Lunar New Year Celebration on Saturday, January 28 from 2-5pm, featuring cultural performances and art under traditional red and gold lanterns. The celebration includes Lion Dances, Chinese Dough Artist, Balloon Artist, DJ, special retail and dining offers, and more. The Lunar New Year event is free and will take place at the Center Plaza (Level 1).

Lion Dancer at USC Pacific Asia Museum's Lunar New Year Festival
Lion Dancer at the Lunar New Year Festival | Photo: USC Pacific Asia Museum

Lunar New Year Festival - USC Pacific Asia Museum (Jan. 22, 2023)

One of the few U.S. institutions dedicated to the arts and culture of Asia and the Pacific Islands, the USC Pacific Asia Museum presents the annual Lunar New Year Festival from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, January 22.

The museum welcomes the Year of the Rabbit with a day of exciting performances and activities for the whole family. Enjoy a traditional lion dance, storytelling, calligraphy and crafts, food trucks, free admission to the museum, and a final chance to view the special exhibition, After Modernism: Through the Lens of Wayne Thom.

Performers and partners include: Barnsdall Arts, Northern Shaolin Kung Fu Association, Korean Classical Music and Dance Company, Clazzical Notes, USC TCD, USC Kazan Taiko, and storyteller Barbara G Wong.

Martial arts demo at The Huntington Library's Chinese New Year Festival
Martial arts demo at the Chinese New Year Festival | Photo: The Huntington Library, Facebook

Chinese New Year Festival - The Huntington Library (Feb. 4-5, 2023)

The Huntington Library welcomes the Year of the Rabbit with a weekend Chinese New Year Festival from 10am to 5pm on Saturday and Sunday, February 4 and 5. The whole family can enjoy lion dancers, a mask-changing artist, martial arts demonstrations, music, arts & crafts demos and more. The festivities will take place in and around the acclaimed Chinese Garden and other performance spaces.

No tickets will be sold onsite. Advance online tickets must be purchased or reserved for all visitors and Members. Capacity is limited.