Looking for something fun to do with the kids this Chinese New Year 2021 in Singapore? We’ve got just what you’re looking for
You may have already planned your reunion dinner and picked out your new outfits for Chinese New Year 2021 in Singapore, but what’s a celebration without fun things to see and do with the whole fam? Not to worry, because we’ve got you covered! Despite the subdued celebrations and social distancing measures still in place, there’s actually plenty for you to experience this Year of the Metal Ox. Plan your Chinese New Year 2021 in Singapore with a little help from our roundup of where to go for light displays, cultural performances, lion dances, fun Chinese New Year workshops and much more!
PS: We’ve arranged everything in chronological order for easy scrolling, so be sure to bookmark this page for more event updates! Scroll down to see all the event details!
Chinese New Year 2021 in Singapore starts off with a bang at the Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall! Usher in the Year of the Ox with the Wan Qing Festival of Spring 2021, which presents an exciting line-up of family-friendly offerings – think lion dance and festive drum workshops, heritage walking trails, and craft activities for the little ones. The memorial hall’s annual thematic installation, Double Prosperity, also works as a great backdrop if you’d like to take a pretty family portrait this Chinese New Year 2021. Click here for a full list of programmes and event times.
When: Tuesday, 5 January – Sunday, 21 February 2021
Where: Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, 12 Tai Gin Road, Singapore 327874
How much: Free. Click here for more information.
Universal Studios Singapore is back with an ultra-fun Chinese New Year event this 2021. Thrill the kids with a meet and greet with Shrek and Fiona, Po from Kung Fu Panda, the Minions, Winnie and Woody Woodpecker, or let Optimus Prime and Megatron wish you prosperity and happiness this Chinese New Year! Once you’ve had a turn on all the rides, sit down to delicious festive bites and free Lunar New Year treats within the park.
When: Thursday, 7 January – Sunday, 28 February 2021
Where: Universal Studios Singapore, Resorts World Sentosa, 8 Sentosa Gateway, Singapore 098269
How much: From $66. Click here for more information and to purchase tickets.
This isn’t related to CNY per se, but it’s just reopened, so it’s a fun one to check out during Chinese New Year 2021 in Singapore! The multi-sensory experience transforms Siloso Beach into an interactive light and soundscape, with colourful images swirling around on the sand and in the water. It’s also a great way to appreciate the island’s lush greenery with the kids once the sun sets. The light display only happens at night on weekends, and you’ll have to book in advance.
When: From 15 January 2021, Fridays, Saturdays, Sunday & PH, 7:30pm – 10:30pm
Where: Siloso Beach, Sentosa Island
How much: Free
Bask in good fortune and gorgeous blooms at Gardens by the Bay’s Chinese New Year 2021 event! The annual CNY floral display will feature 1,400 dahlias in different varieties, all sitting alongside auspicious elements and symbols. This year’s flowers have all been grown in-house – a first for the horticulturists at Gardens by the Bay – so expect to see azaleas, chrysanthemums, cymbidiums and more.
When: Friday, 15 January – Sunday, 21 February 2021
Where: Flower Dome, Gardens by the Bay, 18 Marina Gardens Drive, Singapore 018953
How much: Admission charges to the Flower Dome apply. Purchase your tickets here.
Spend Chinese New Year 2021 in Singapore at this collaborative effort between eight local artists and The MeshMinds Foundation. Dubbed as Asia’s first drive-through exhibition, the art pieces on display are all inspired by the Year of the Ox. Each one is an original digital drawing that has been transformed into 3D installation art, selfie filters and augmented reality murals – powered by Spark AR from Facebook. The artworks focus on the UN Sustainable Development Goals such as Goal 13, Climate Action and Goal 15, Life on Land, and you can either walk through the exhibition (social distancing rules still apply!) or drive through with electric vehicles.
When: Friday, 22 January – Sunday, 28 March 2021
Where: Level 6 Carpark, Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre, 1 Straits Boulevard, Singapore 018906
How much: From $5. Click here to purchase tickets.
While the festive bazaar at this annual Chinese New Year event in Singapore will not be taking place due to COVID-19 restrictions, the festival itself will still go on virtually. It all starts with the official light-up and opening ceremony, which takes place live online on the Chinatown Festivals Facebook page. The light-up ceremony will feature lion dances, cultural and acrobatic performances. Throughout Chinese New Year 2021 in Singapore, there will be plenty of activities, giveaways, short film screenings and festive baking workshops (click here to get your baking kit!), all of which will be taking place virtually on Chinatown Festivals’ social media pages and website.
There’s also the annual street light-up to check out. This year’s display blends modern and traditional elements and will comprise sculpted lanterns in the shape of oxen, gold coins, ingots, flowers and auspicious greetings. Fun fact: You can adopt these lanterns once the street light-up ends in March (email [email protected] for more info). You’ll need to apply for it by 28 February 2021 and arrange for collection yourself. The light-up will also be part of a virtual tour and heritage trail, which will showcase the lights and various interesting points in Chinatown. Click here for a full list of programmes.
When: Saturday, 23 January – Friday, 12 March 2021
How much: Free
If you and your child are already members of the National Library Board, then sign up for this parent-child activity at Bedok Library for a creative afternoon. Aimed at children between the ages of four and eight, kiddos will be enthralled by an enchanting storytelling session and arts and crafts – a perfect way to enjoy a laidback yet fun Chinese New Year 2021 in Singapore.
When: Thursday, 28 January 2021
Where: Bedok Public Library, Programme Room Level 3, 11 Bedok North Street 1, [email protected], #03-04, Singapore 469662
How much: Free. Register online here.
Chingay is a major highlight every year, and it’s no different for Chinese New Year 2021 in Singapore! However, this year’s edition will look a little different. The 49th edition of this annual festival will air on the telly, online and on social media instead, with more than 2,000 performers participating. Keep your eyes peeled for spectacular performances like the 100-lion dance performance, which will include CGI and involves local and international troupes from as far away as San Francisco. Technology saves the day this year, and it will be used to refresh the traditional ethnic showcases, so you’ll see little details that you’d normally miss at physical parades. You can also participate in Digital Chingay 2021 – simply submit a video of yourself either singing, dancing or showcasing a talent of your choice or design your own Chingay float or costume. Don’t forget to pick up cute souvenirs from the online Chingay Mama Shop. Click here for a list of programmes and information on how to participate.
When: Saturday, 20 February 2021, 8 – 9pm
How much: Free.
This event is a must-visit every Chinese New Year in Singapore, and it’s known for its stunning fireworks displays, interactive exhibits and Instagram-worthy lanterns. However, this year’s festivities will be slightly toned down. And while you won’t have the usual fireworks and live performances, there’s still plenty to see and do here. River Hongbao 2021 will take place at Gardens by the Bay this year, and will comprise an exhibition, lantern displays and nightly performance screenings. The lantern display will have 24 giant lanterns, which will make for some great Insta snaps. Look out for the giant God of Fortune display, beautiful peacocks and the always-popular animal zodiacs.
Afterwards, head to the 2021 River Hongbao exhibition, which will focus on the importance of the lion in Chinese culture. Learn the different styles and elements of a lion dance performance, explore the dance’s history and don’t miss out on the lion dance artefacts from private collectors and organisations, some of which date back to the 1950s. There won’t be tour guides on site, but you’ll find plenty of guided tour videos playing around the exhibition if you’d like to learn more. Live performances are typically a large part of River Hongbao but this year’s performances will all be pre-recorded. Expect Getai and Xinyao performances, which will feature local artists. Be sure to browse through the River Hongbao website as well for more online Chinese New Year activities.
When: 10 – 16 February 2021, 2pm onwards
Where: Gardens by the Bay, 18 Marina Gardens Drive, Singapore 018953
How much: Free. Due to social distancing requirements, you’ll have to pre-register online for a slot to visit River Hongbao 2021. Tickets with pre-allocated time slots will be released daily online from 3 February at 11am onwards. Each visitor is only allowed to reserve tickets for one time slot per day, up to a maximum of 4 tickets.