Hong Kong has an interesting mix of public holidays and festivals that reflect its rich history as an ex-British colony that has s strong Chinese traditional influence. Some of the notable holidays and festivals include…

1. Chinese New Year: Falling on the first day of the lunar calendar, it is the most important traditional festival for Chinese people.

2. Ching Ming Festival: Also known as Tomb Sweeping Day, it is a time for families to pay respects to their ancestors by cleaning and decorating their graves.

But at the same time Easter and Christmas are also not just official holidays but also widely celebrated.

HK is even more ex-British than Singapore in that here we also have Boxing Day on the 26th of December!

Official holidays are those that are “gazetted” and are a day off for working people, what might be called Bank Holidays or mandatory days off in other countries.

But there are also traditional festivals that are celebrated and well worth participating in, which don’t automatically get you a day away from the office. These include the Ghost Festival and Chinese Valentines’ (of which there are two different versions, read on for more about those).

The Ghost Festival, also known as the Hungry Ghost Festival, is celebrated on the fifteenth day of the seventh lunar month. It is a time when it is believed that the gates of hell are opened, allowing the spirits of the dead to visit the living world. Families offer food and incense to appease the wandering spirits and ensure their peace.

Chinese Valentines’ Day, or Qixi Festival, falls on the seventh day of the seventh lunar month and is also known as the Double Seventh Festival. It is a day for celebrating romantic love, inspired by the legend of the Cowherd and Weaver Girl who were allowed to be reunited on this day each year. People will often wear red clothes, decorate their homes with lanterns, and enjoy special foods like rice dumplings and milk tea. Some may also exchange love notes or small gifts with their loved ones.

Sometimes the government parks department, the LCSD, will set up lanterns or special displays in popular places for people to commemorate at least the Valentine’s day.

There is another “Chinese Valentine’s day” which is the 15th day of the lunar new year, this one is popular as well because it is often around the same time of year as the western Valentine’s days because the lunar calendar floats against the western.

Here is the list:

Festival NameRomanized CantoneseChinese NameRuleGregorian Date 2025
New Year’s Day1st of the yearWednesday, January 1, 2025
Lunar New YearSin Jyu1st day of the 1st lunar monthTuesday, February 11, 2025
Lunar New Year 2nd daySin Jyu Yat年第二日2nd day of the 1st lunar monthWednesday, February 12, 2025
Lunar New Year 3rd daySin Jyu Saam年第三日3rd day of the 1st lunar monthThursday, February 13, 2025
Lantern FestivalYuen Siu元宵節15th day of the 1st lunar monthTuesday, February 25, 2025
Beating Bad Guys Day (Qinglong Festival)Ching Lung Jor Sin青龍節2nd day of the 2nd lunar monthMonday, March 3, 2025
Good FridayVariable date, Friday before Easter SundayFriday, March 28, 2025
Easter Monday / Double Third FestivalVariable date, Monday after Easter SundayMonday, March 31, 2025
Ching Ming Festival or Grave SweepingChing Ming清明節15th day after the Spring EquinoxSaturday, April 5, 2025
Tin Hau’s BirthdayTin Hau Jor Sin天后誕辰23rd day of the 3rd lunar monthSaturday, April 26, 2025
Labour DayMay 1stThursday, May 1, 2025
Buddha’s Birthday / Cheung Chau Bun Festival 2025Fat Sin佛誕8th day of the 4th lunar monthThursday, May 15, 2025
Dragon Boat FestivalTuen Ng端午節5th day of the 5th lunar monthMonday, June 2, 2025
Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Establishment Day香港特別行政區成立紀念日July 1stTuesday, July 1, 2025
Ghost FestivalYu Lan盂蘭節15th day of the 7th lunar monthSunday, August 24, 2025
Mid-Autumn FestivalJung Chau中秋節15th day of the 8th lunar monthMonday, September 22, 2025
National Day國慶日October 1stWednesday, October 1, 2025
Chung Yeung FestivalChung Yeung重陽節9th day of the 9th lunar monthSunday, October 12, 2025
Christmas Day聖誕節December 25thThursday, December 25, 2025
Boxing Day聖誕 後第一天December 26thFriday, December 26, 2025

Buddha’s Birthday: This is also the Cheung Chau Bun Festival, which is not a Buddist festival at all but a Taoist one, but has in recent years been allowed to “float” to match Buddha …’s birthday, making it a combined celebration for both religions. And anyway it is a day off and so people can go to Cheung Chau to participate. The Cheung Chau Bun Festival is marked by the steaming of buns, the climbing of the towers, and the procession of flats with children dressed up as historical or topical figures.

Some of these are “traditional, not public” which means they are not a day off for office workers, nor will banks and office be closed, but people, particularly older and more traditional folk, will mark those days.

Generally traditional holidays follow the Chinese lunar calendar, you can convert from that to the western or “Gregorian” calendar using this helpful chart from the Hong Kong Observatory. https://www.hko.gov.hk/en/gts/time/calendar/pdf/files/2025e.pdf

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