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Labour Day

Labour Day 2017 and 2018

Labour Day in China, or International Worker’s Day, is a public holiday that celebrates workers’ contributions to the country.

YearDateDayHoliday
201729 Apr to 1 MaySat to MonLabour Day
201830 AprMonLabour Day Holiday
1 MayTueLabour Day

International Worker’s Day is a time for family gatherings and fun. Labour day is held on May 1 of each year. Unlike many Chinese holidays, the date of Labour day is based on the Gregorian calendar instead of the lunar calendar.

On International Worker’s Day holiday, Chinese people can enjoy a variety of activities in cities and in rural areas. Because of the warm climates during May in most of China, many people opt to enjoy outings in natural areas. People also choose to enjoy theaters and shows that are performed in cities. Street performances are also a common event that occurs on this holiday.

During International Worker’s Day and the days leading up to it, the Chinese government approves major discounts for goods in shops across the country. This is meant to stimulate the economy, but it also allows people to buy electronics, clothing, and other products at low prices. This has caused shopping to be a favorite Labour Day activity in China. While there are no special foods or cultural customs on International Worker’s Day, there are plenty of activities offered by businesses. Restaurants and street vendors offer an opportunity for you to enjoy a good meal without worrying about cooking or work.

History

Labour Day in China first began in 1919. In 1949, the Chinese government officially declared Labour Day to be a national holiday. This holiday originally served as a means of honoring workers across China, but it became a means of pushing political rhetoric during the Cultural Revolution. In present day, Labour Day is now a fun-filled holiday meant for enjoying some time off with friends and family.

National Holiday

As a major Chinese public holiday, Labour Day is widely celebrated across both rural and urban China. International Worker’s Day is three days long, but the days other than May 1 change every year. If Labour Day is on a Tuesday, the other two days will be on the Monday before and the Wednesday after. During Labour Day, travel volume is high and dense crowds can be expected. China’s prime tourist destinations are frequently visited by both Chinese citizens and foreigners.

Here are the top cities for traveling to during International Worker’s Day:

      • Guangzhou
      • Beijing
      • Shanghai
      • Hong Kong

Celebrations

During International Worker’s Day, you can take part in various celebrations that are held in China’s major cities. Prior to May 1, city residents and public workers create beautiful arrangements of flowers to make the area appealing before tourists arrive. You can take walks through parks to enjoy the scenery throughout the day, but mornings are good times to avoid the crowds. On the streets, you can listen to live music as bands and DJs often help visitors enjoy the holiday. To honor workers and Chinese history, there are also parades with bright floats and marching bands. Beijing and other locations also have a flag raising ceremony. Tiananmen Square often has an array of activities for people wishing to celebrate International Worker’s Day.

Travel

International Worker’s Day holiday is one of the busiest travel periods in China. Along with a large volume of internal travel throughout China, International Worker’s Day attracts many visitors from Europe and Australia. During this period, tourist destinations such as the Great Wall and the Temple of Heaven are filled with visitors. Despite heavy travel, it is possible to find a quiet place to enjoy the Labour Day holiday.

  • Guangzhou

    Guangzhou has lighter crowds than Beijing and Shanghai during the Labour Day holiday, so you may be able to enjoy touring the city or checking out less popular tourist destinations.

  • Hohhot

    Hohhot is also a good travel choice during this busy holiday. While the climate is a bit cooler than the rest of China in May, Hohhot is a good place to visit if you would like to experience the various ethnic groups and cultures that China is known for. Hohhot is heavily influenced by Mongolian culture, so Labour Day can serve as your excuse to experience some interesting cuisine and architecture.

  • Taipei

    For a more remote experience, Taipei is a good option. This capital city of Taiwan is not visited by many people from mainland China, and tourists tend to visit more popular locations like Beijing. A large portion of locals also leave Taipei to go to the mainland during the holiday.

  • Kashgar

    Far to the west, Kashgar in Xinjiang is an area that tourists and most Chinese people rarely visit. This city has a unique Muslim influence that has fused with some standards of Chinese culture. If you choose to visit Kashgar on Labour Day, you can enjoy some amazing sites like Shipton’s Arch.

  • Beihai

    In southern Guangxi, Beihai is a beach location that is relatively unknown to most tourists. You can visit Beihai and enjoy the warm weather without dealing with stressful crowds.

Labour Day in China is an opportunity for relaxation and travel. While it may not be an ideal time to travel to some of the most popular tourist destinations, you can use the Labour Day holiday to enjoy a trip to other locations in China with good planning and organization.