Tết Nguyên Đán is the most important Holiday in Vietnamese culture. The holiday varies between 21.01. and 21.02 and is celebrated for three days. This year it falls on February 12th, 2021. It is part of the tradition that you visit the temples as a family, and special meals are prepared. Tết Nguyên Đán doesn’t only celebrate the new year, but also the beginning of spring.


Tết Nguyên Đán is divided into three periods:

  1. Tất Niên (preparation of the festival)
  2. Giao Thừa (the eve before the holiday)
  3. Tân Niên (the holidays)


According to tradition, the Vietnamese honor their ancestors at the new years festival and celebrate the beginning of the year together with their family members. As already mentioned, Tết Nguyên Đán is the most important holiday in Vietnamese culture and is therefore planned and prepared well in advance. Already two weeks before the holiday, the Vietnamese regularly got to the temples to pray. Many families also visit the graves of their ancestors. It is also part of the preparation to clean the house and decorate it with many colorful flowers. Like many of us put up a Christmas tree, on Tết Nguyên Đán, a New years’ tree made of five to six meters of bamboo is placed in the house and then is decorated with origami and cactus branches.

On the eve of Tết Nguyên Đán, people cook in abundance and serve a feast the next day. At Tết Nguyên Đán itself, all family members dress beautifully and elaborately, especially the children and young people. Often children receive “luck money” in red envelopes as a gift.


Our orphanage also celebrated the Vietnamese new years’ celebration of Tết Nguyên Đán by eating a special dinner together, dancing and singing.

Lights on Tet in Vietnam