Your handy guide for celebrating Chinese New Year in San Francisco to the fullest!

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February 12, 2022

Lunar New Year 2022 Parade & Events

Lunar New Year brings with it a festive month of events, including the Alaska Airlines Chinese New Year Parade, and many other events, exhibits and experiences.

The Year of the Tiger begins on Feb. 1, 2022 and is celebrated around the world in Asian communities. San Francisco has its own take on this festive occasion. Here are some ways you can join the celebration.

Chinese New Year Parade

One of the grandest nighttime illuminated parades in the U.S., the parade started in the 1860s and has grown to be one of the largest celebrations of Asian culture in this hemisphere. Parade highlights include elaborate floats, lion dancers, folk dancers, costumed school groups, marching bands, stilt walkers, Chinese acrobats and a 268-foot-long Golden Dragon.

This year's parade will be held on Feb. 19 and will start on Second and Market streets. If this is your first parade, bleacher seats might be a good suggestion. Crowds are extremely dense along the parade route. If you opt for the standing room option, be sure to stake out your spot well before parade time. Arriving between 3:30 and 4 p.m. is recommended. Ear plugs are suggested for all ages; firecrackers are an integral part of the parade. Parking south of Market St. is usually easier; garages in Union Square will be impacted by crowds and street closures. Muni and BART are excellent options to get to and from the parade. And bring an umbrella. It will often rain on the parade, and it is considered good luck, so everyone takes it in stride.

Chinatown Street Fair

The San Francisco Chinese Chamber of Commerce will host a two-day Chinese Community Street Fair, Feb. 19 and 20, with activities and entertainment for all ages. Enjoy Chinese folk dancing, opera, drumming and much more at the entertainment stage in the heart of San Francisco Chinatown. The fair will run on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Miss Chinatown USA Pageant

Each year, more than a dozen women from around the U.S. compete for the title of Miss Chinatown U.S.A. This year's pageant will be held at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco on the Embarcadero. Cocktail hour begins at 4 p..m., with the pageant at 5 p.m. and a dinner and coronation ball to follow at 6:30 p.m.

Nightlife at California Academy of Sciences

On Feb. 3, the California Academy of Sciences' weekly Nightlife event will delve into Lunar New Year traditions. Learn about the significance of Chinese tea ceremonies and watch a powerful lion dance performance by the Jing Mo Athletic Association, a Chinatown-based martial arts performance troupe.

BUY TICKETS TO CALIFORNIA ACADEMY OF SCIENCES

San Francisco Symphony

Celebrate Lunar New Year with the San Francisco Symphony on Feb. 5. Conductor Yue Bao makes her debut leading the Orchestra in The Butterfly Lovers Concerto and works by Huan-zhi Li, Tan Dun, Texu Kim, Tzyen Hsiao, and Liu Yuan, as well as traditional folk music.

Where to Stay

Need to book a hotel room for your visit during the Lunar New Year excitement? Check out these great options in some of San Francisco's most popular neighborhoods that are close to the action.

LEARN MORE ABOUT LUNAR NEW YEAR IN SAN FRANCISCO

Best Areas to Stay Near the Chinese New Year Parade

 

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