Your Guide to Chinese New Year 2019 in Liverpool

GONG HEI FAT CHOI! It’s the Year of the Pig so bring the family and your appetite to China Town this weekend.

The lanterns are up and a dragon has been seen dancing through the city streets. It can only mean on thing. The Chinese New Year 2019 celebrations take place this weekend (8th-10th February) at Liverpool’s famous China Town at the surrounding area. From family friendly workshops and lots of market stalls to browse, to a brand new light show, lion, unicorn and dragon parades, firecrackers and stage performances, right across the three days. There’s something for everyone.

Join Jingwei on the next instalment of her adventure with her new friend, Piggy, and read on to plan your Chinese New Year weekend.

You can jump the train into town to catch the celebrations, just head to Merseyrail’s website to plan your journey and Arriva has also got you covered, info on how to get there by bus here.

Friday 8th February

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All Weekend City Venues

To celebrate the Year of the Pig, Culture Liverpool have commissioned illustrator Cherie Grist Renshaw to create a modern version of the 12 animals of the zodiac. They’re arriving a selected locations around the city and if you manage to snap all 12, there could be a tasty prize for you and a friend. Find out more here. 

7pm – 7:15pm Pre Show Entertainment, Nelson Street/Chinese Arch

Symbolising good luck and fortune, the traditional lion and dragon dance will take place at the Chinese Arch. Using LED lit costumes, this performance is said to banish the winter monster and welcome the Spring.

7pm – 7:30pm The Quest for the Arch, Nelson Street/Chinese Arch

This is your first chance to see the brand new projection and pyrotechnic show following Jingwei and her new friend Piggie as they journey to the west. Head to Nelson Street to get a good spot and watch the pre-show entertainment including Pagoda Arts showcasing stunning costumes, music and dance. Expect to hear Chinese Opera, hip hop and keep your eyes peeled for a bride and groom.


Saturday 9th February

11am – 6pm The Bombed Out Church ( St. Luke’s)

The gardens of St Luke’s Church will host local producers and traders on Saturday from 11am so if you’re heading in to explore China Town, grab some street food and browse the stalls at this iconic Liverpool venue.

12pm – 6pm The Bombed Out Church ( St. Luke’s)

You can also check out Chinese New Year drumming sessions and craft and storytelling workshops inside the Bombed Out Church from 12pm. A great way to keep the kids entertained.

7pm – 7:45pm Pre Show Entertainment, Nelson Street/Chinese Arch

Back for a second mesmerising performance, the LED lit lion and dragon dancers will return to banish the winter and welcome Spring from 7pm.

7pm – 7:45pm The Quest for the Arch, Nelson Street/Chinese Arch

Make sure you’re in a good spot to see the second showing of the journey to the west projection and pyrotechnic show which follows Jingwei and her new friend Piggie. The pre-show entertainment is provided by Pagoda Arts in partnership with Everyman Playhouse and Liverpool Confucius Institute. Expect colourful, handcrafted costumes, the latest in Chinese fashion and lots of music.

More: Here’s our top Chinese restaurants to eat in or take away. 


Sunday 10th February

11:30am – 4:30pm China Town

The celebrations officially begin with the arrival of the lion and the dragon outside The Black E and the unicorn on Nelson Street. The full day programme includes the following events:

11:30am – 7pm John Collins Funfairs, China Town

11:30am – 7pm The Taste Of China Sunday Street Market, Great George Street

Make sure you bring your appetite to China Town on Sunday as the market offers up lots of stalls selling traditional Chinese cuisine, gits and keepsakes to mark this very special occasion.

11:30am – 5:30pm The Chinese New Year Family Zone,

There’s a designated Chinese New Year Family Zone at Great George’s Square and Nelson Street on Sunday. Expect to see little pagodas, art workshops, street theatre and art installations. There will be appearances from the Chinese Opera stars, lantern making, puppet shows, Chinese calligraphy and the China Dream Stagecoach bus will be hosting storytelling sessions on board too.

11:30am Movema Dance and Youth Community Group, The Black E

11:30am Kwong Tam School of Tai Chi Great George Square Stage

12:20pm Pagoda Arts Flower Drums, Great George Square Stage

12:30pm – 4:30pm The Black E Youth Circus

1pm Lucky Man Firecracker Display, Great George Square

1pm Family Festival at Red Door, Berry Street

Red Door Liverpool is the perfect hangout on Sunday for kids and big kids alike. They have pizza making classes, cocktail masterclasses and more, head to the family day 1-4pm just metres away from the Chinese New Year action.

1:30pm Pagoda Arts Chinese New Year Activities, Henry Street

1:45pm Liverpool Hung Gar Kung Fu Friendship Association, Great George Square Stage

2pm Wah Sing Community Centre Dancers, Great George Square Stage

2:20pm Friendship Dancers, Great George Square Stage

2:25pm Liverpool Phoenix Qipiao Team, Great George Square Stage

2:40pm 24 Festival Drums, Great George Square Stage

3:15pm Friendship Dancers, Great George Square Stage

3:20pm Movema Dance, Great George Square Stage

Liverpool’s renowned dance group, Movema are bringing you performances across the weekend with three separate groups taking on Chinese New Year. All the info is here.

3:30pm Wirral Chinese Association, Great George Square Stage

3:40 Everyman Playhouse & Liverpool Confucius Institute, Great George Square Stage

6pm The Quest for the Arch, Nelson Street/China Town

The final performance of The Quest for the Arch projection and pyrotechnic show is at 6pm at the Chinese Arch. Pre projection entertainment comes from the lion and dragon dancers, Movema and the 24 Festival Drums. The show is set to end at approximately 6:45pm.


Stick with The Guide Liverpool socials this weekend as we bring you all the live action from China Town as it happens. Catch us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. Don’t forget to tag your pictures with #CNY #ChineseNewYear and follow @CultureLpool for more info.

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