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Vietnam New Year: Tet. What to do during public holidays in Vietnam?

31/01/2024 78 Views
Vietnam New Year, or the New Year in various Asian countries, is seen as the most significant event of the year

What is special about the Tet in Vietnam?
Vietnam New Year, or the New Year in various Asian countries, is seen as the most significant event of the year. It is not limited to a simple day, but also has a dimension of deep belief and represents an ancient custom dear to the hearts of the Vietnamese people. During this article, we will explore Tet: the traditional festivity of Vietnam with its cultural characteristics.

History of Vietnamese New Year: Tet

Têt, the beginning of a year, a month, a season, a new cycle of agricultural production. Tet is also the biggest and most important holiday of the year for Vietnamese people and everyone gives the best things for Tet.

history-of-tet-in-vietnam
History of Vietnamese New Year: Tet


According to research by historian Tran Van Giap, the "Lunar New Year" in Vietnam has existed since the beginning of the first century AD. The origin of the word Tet as well as the meaning of the word “Lunar New Year” were also popular at this time.
According to the legend "Banh Chung, Banh Day", the Lunar New Year may have appeared since the time of the Hung kings, with the legend of Lang Lieu and Banh Chung.

Activities in Tet Holiday in Vietnam

Vietnam New Year has been passed down, preserved and perpetuated from generation to generation. Despite the evolution of life and the development of society, national cultural values remain firmly anchored within Vietnamese families, whether they reside in the country or abroad. These values are considered the national roots that are essential to pass on to future generations.
activities-in-tet-holiday
Activities in Tet Holiday in Vietnam

Tet customs in Vietnam stand out from those of other ethnic groups in the country due to their unique characteristics, thus being part of a centuries-old tradition. Ahead of Tet, precisely on the 23rd day of the 12th lunar month, people begin to worship Ong Cong and Ong Tao. Subsequently, families hold an end-of-year meal on the 30th day of Tet, eagerly anticipating New Year's Eve. On the first day of Tet, the whole family gathers at the eldest son's house, then goes together to present their New Year wishes to their loved ones. In the excitement of Tet, warmth and joy emanate from the family atmosphere, offering everyone a feeling of happiness.

What to eat during Tet? Tet specialties in Vietnam

1. Chung Cake
There is an old popular saying: “Thịt mỡ, dưa hành, câu đối đỏ, cây nêu ngày Tết, bánh chưng xanh”, in english: “ Fat meat, pickled onions, red parallel sentences. New Year pole, strings of firecrackers, Chung Cake.” Chung Cake is considered the soul of Tet and is a cake with a very long history in Vietnamese culinary culture. The cake is made with delicious sticky rice, pork, green beans and wrapped squarely in leaves.
chung-cake
Chung Cake

2. Pickled onion
Along with fatty meat and banh chung, pickled onions are an essential dish of traditional Vietnamese Tet. Pickled onions are usually only salted once a year during Tet. Pickled onions eaten with other dishes will not be greasy, especially fatty foods.
pickled-onion
Pickled onion

3. Spring roll (nem)
Fried spring rolls stand out as the most popular and refined dish, requiring a multitude of ingredients without requiring a specific menu. Flaunting a tempting golden exterior, these rolls contain a filling of meat, wild mushrooms, vegetables and bean sprouts. This dish is widely acclaimed and has the status of “national soul” within the Vietnamese culinary culture of Tet.
spring-roll
Spring roll (nem)

4. Boiled chicken
The process begins with meticulously cleaning the chicken, followed by boiling for approximately 20 minutes. Sporting a golden hue on the outside, the chicken turns out to be both tender and delicate. There is a lingering belief surrounding this preparation, with people believing it ensures a lucky Lunar New Year year.
Boiled-chicken
Boiled chicken

Differences in tet between Vietnamese zones

The specialty of Tet in Northern Vietnam

The North has chung cake  with the striking green color of dong leaves. Along with banh day, chung cake is the most solemn food placed on the altar during Tet to commemorate the immense gratitude of grandparents and ancestors for birth and upbringing.
chung-cake
Chung Cake in northern Vietnam

The specialty of Tet in Central region of Vietnam

Banh Ro is an essential central specialty during Vietnam New Year holidays or death anniversaries. The main ingredients of banh ro are sticky rice and green beans. The way of wrapping banh ro is similar to the way of wrapping banh ro, so banh ro is also considered a copy of the famous banh chung.
banh-ro
Banh Ro in the Central Vietnam

The specialty of Tet in the Southern of Vietnam

Southern banh tet is very diverse in terms of flavor and color. These are the specialties of Vietnam New Year. Each type of banh tet has a different combination of ingredients, shape and color. It can be banh tet with the sticky exterior mixed with grated coconut, black beans, black beans, pandan leaves... to create batches of the banh ro with eye-catching colors.
banh-tet
Banh Tet in the Southern Vietnam
 

Notes during a trip during Tet in Vietnam

Budget: Planning a substantial budget is imperative when traveling during Tet, as prices generally increase by 2 to 3 times. Around this time, many stores close their doors, leading to a scarcity of available items and considerably high prices. It is particularly recommended to bring food supplies, in case no stores are accessible during this period.

Transportation: Traffic becomes extremely heavy during this period, as people frequently visit businesses to make purchases in preparation for the New Year. With this in mind, it is recommended to hire a Vietnamese private driver, with thorough knowledge of the country's roads, in order to avoid long waits caused by traffic jams.

Accommodation: It is strongly recommended to make an advance reservation for your hotel room, given the massive influx of tourists during this period. Opt for renowned establishments that offer reasonable prices to ensure a pleasant experience without putting too much of a strain on your budget.

In conclusion about Christmas in Vietnam

Vietnam stands out as one of the jewels of traditional culture in Southeast Asia, boasting a long and heroic rich history that reveals a beauty that is both gentle and delicate.
Experience the magic of Vietnam New Year, where affordable prices combine with exceptional quality of service. Expect to receive a response to your message within 8 hours or less.

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