Kempinski Blog Article
Throughout the ages, spring has been seen as a time of renewal, new life and energy - the perfect contrast to the cold winter. It is because of this that cultures all across the world have, over time, attached all sorts of traditions to spring, read on to find out some of our favourites.
Celebrated by Hindus, Holi (also known as the Festival of Colour) takes place at the end of winter each year – in 2017 it falls on March 12th. Across the world, but particularly in India and Nepal, crowds of people come together to celebrate fertility, love and all things good.
The festival begins the night before with the event of Holika Dahan, when wood and dung are burnt on huge bonfires to symbolise the triumph of the god Vishnu over the evil devil Holika. The next day, Rangwali Holi takes place – throughout the day thousands of people meet and celebrate by throwing dyes at one another, soaking themselves in vibrantly coloured water and having a wild time!
Taking place on April 24th in Zurich, Switzerland, Sechseläuten is an exciting spring festival that dates back to medieval times, when the first day of summer working hours were celebrated in the city's many guildhalls. Today, it takes the form of a procession through the city, followed by the exploding of a snowman effigy known as the Böögg – a mischievous and frightening character from Swiss folklore.
Packed full of fireworks, the effigy is placed on top of a pyre, and the time taken for the fireworks to set alight and explode is said to indicate how good the summer will be. A shorter space of time means a hotter summertime! To catch this exciting celebration, stay at either Kempinski Grand Hotel Des Bains in St. Moritz or Grand Hotel Kempinski Geneva for a truly exquisite trip away.
Part of the range of festivities that take place in China throughout springtime, the Qingming Festival, also known as Tomb Sweeping Day, is a celebration that focuses on the enjoyment of the greenery of spring and the worship of one's ancestors. On the day – April 4th in 2017 – families travel to tidy and decorate their ancestors' tombs, paying their respects and offering items of food, drink, incense and flowers to the deceased.
Afterwards, people head out into parks and the wilderness to enjoy the greenery and flowers of the season, many fly kites and lanterns in public spaces, and delicious foods such as sweet green rice balls, crispy qingming cakes and peach blossom porridge are eaten.
If you would like to experience the festival yourself, stay at either Kempinski Hotel Beijing Lufthansa Center, Grand Kempinski Hotel Shanghai or Kempinski Hotel Huizhou, or choose another location from our wide range of other excellent Chinese destinations.