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Dragon Boat Festival

June 20, 2013
Dragon Boat Festival

Legend has it that the origins of Duanwu Festival, observed on the fifth day of the fifth lunar month, trace back to the Zhou Dynasty (1046-256 BC) when beloved poet Qu Yuan drowned himself in the Miluo River, prompting locals to throw zhongzi (bamboo leaf-wrapped sticky rice) and paddle boats into the river.

Thousands of years later in the C.21st, the day is celebrated in Hong Kong with an annual Dragon Boat Carnival, transforming the ancient folk ritual into a modern sport, and this year taking place from June 21-23 with a line-up of fierce competitors from both HK and abroad.

But as the drums beat for the colourful canoes racing across the harbour this weekend, don’t waste your time and patience attempting to see it from shore – rather, hire a vessel of your own for blissfully crowd-free, prime views. For a junk or speedboat there’s Asia Yachting, or if you prefer something more traditional Saffron Cruises has Chinese junks.

Then, post race, sail further east around the island to see the gorgeous Tai Long Wan coast, around south to Tai Tam for a spot of your own water sporting, or to make the most of it head to outlying Po Toi island just in time for sunset sips. Don’t forget to bring the zhongzi!

June 21-23, details at http://www.hkdba.com.hk
Asia Yachting / +852 2580 8650 / http://www.asiayachting.net
Saffron Cruises / +852 2857 1311 / http://www.saffron-cruises.com
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