CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: What we saw during the Chinese New Year party

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CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: What we saw during the Chinese New Year party
What better way to celebrate the Chinese New Year 2016 than visiting the world's oldest Chinatown!

On Monday (Feb 8), the Chinatown district in Binondo, Manila practically shut down as people from all over the metro and nearby provinces celebrated the Chinese New Year -- the Year of the Fire Monkey.

As always, the color red dominated the locale. Participants in parades and floats featured the Fire Monkey, the theme of this year's Chinese zodiac sign.

Some of the parade highlights include elaborately decorated floats, school marching bands, stilt walkers, lion dancers and exploding firecrackers.


Dragons and Lions

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Green Lion
The green lion dances to the entertainment of the crowd along Ongpin Street.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Dragons and Lions
The green and yellow lion join the blue dragon to enter establishments in the Binondo District to give good luck. In return, owners of the shops give "ang pao," those red envelopes containing tokens or cash.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Teener and the yellow lion
Teener dons the lion headgear to start the dance...

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Yellow Lion
... then continues to gyrate and shake to the beat of the drums.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Dragon Dancers 1
Dragon dancers go in circles around exploding fire crackers. This ritual supposedly can drive away evil spirits and bad luck, according to Chinese elders.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Dragon Dancers 2



Tikoy (rice cakes), beverages, dimsum, Ling Nam noodles (my favorite!) and castañas.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Chinese Beverages
Chinese beverages on display in a shop along Ongpin Street.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Tikoy (rice cakes)
Tikoy (or Ti Kui) are available in green, brown and white colors. These rice cakes are very popular during the celebration of the lunar new year.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Tikoy stall
More tikoys sold along the streets, paired with lucky fruits bound to form a circle.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Man preparing castanas
Man uses a shovel to mix fresh castaña nuts.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Dimsum
Dimsum, a popular Chinese dish of small steamed or fried savory dumplings containing various fillings, served as a snack or main course.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016:: Ling Nam Noodle Factory
Ling Nam Noodle Factory along Alonzo Street. The canton noodles is one of its topsellers.

People, charms, souvenirs

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Crowd shoots photos in the streets
The crowd gets thicker as they take photos of Dragon and Lion dances.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Street post lantern
A red lantern hanging from a street post with a tall building in the background.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Charms and souvenirs 1
During the celebration of the Chinese New Year, people buy all sorts of charms and souvenirs peddled along the streets.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Marching band
Marching bands from nearby schools go on parade. They are composed mainly of young girls and boys.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Charms and souvenirs 2
A close-up shot of  red and gold charms.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Batman
To our surprise, Batman was also there to join the revelry! 

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Charms and souvenirs 3
More charms! A street vendor peddles his wares along Ongpin Street. 

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Year of the Fire Monkey
A float bearing the "Kung Hei Fat Choy" and the "Fire Monkey" graphics.

Children at play, in tantrums and in sleep

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Boy and his ice cream
A boy buys ice cream from a vendor.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Girl in tantrums
Not everybody was delighted to hear the loud fire crackers.,, this girl seemed agitated by the deafening sound!

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Boy in father's shoulders
... but this boy was quite happy when he saw the fire crackers roar in the streets.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Girl asleep
Meanwhile, this little girl got bored and slept her way during the parade.

CHINATOWN PHOTOWALK 2016: Balloon man
A balloon vendor walks in the streets. Dozens of these vendors were all over the Binondo District.


It was fun shooting photos and enjoying the party along Ongpin Street, Binondo - needless to say, we're looking forward to seeing what the year of the Fire Monkey has in store for all of us. Gong Hei Fat Choi!


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