Joyful celebrations to welcome in the Year of the Snake


The city is vibrant with festive joy as the Year of the Snake arrives. Macau Government Tourist Office (MGTO) sincerely wishes Macau citizens and visitors a new year flowing with vitality and bliss. MGTO also hopes that Macau tourism industry will thrive with its diversified and sound development, sparing no efforts in building a "World Centre of Tourism and Leisure". MGTO and the Civic and Municipal Affairs Bureau (IACM) jointly presented Spring Festival celebrations at the Ruins of St. Paul's and Senado Square on the 1st day of Lunar New Year (February 10), sharing the new year delight with Macau citizens and visitors. Last year over 25 million visitors visited Macau from Greater China region. During Chinese New Year holidays, a remarkable number of visitors are expected to travel from Mainland and neighboring regions to Macau for vacation. Likewise, international visitors come to Macau during this season to experience the festive ambience of Chinese New Year. MGTO and IACM thus took the opportunity to express New Year greetings to citizens and visitors, showing the warm hospitality of Macau. MGTO Director Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes, Chairman of Administration Committee of IACM, Tam Vai Man, MGTO Deputy Directors Manuel Pires and Cecilia Tse along with the travel trade representatives hosted the eye-dotting ceremony for the lions and golden dragons at the Ruins of St. Paul's and lit firecrackers at Senado Square to mark the celebrations in the morning of the 1st day of Lunar New Year. Afterwards, the guests joined with the God of Fortune to distribute "Lai Si" and souvenirs at Senado Square, a place thus permeated with jubilant atmosphere. "Lai Si" given by the God of Fortune bestowed good wishes for the prosperity of Macau. Performance by the dance troupe from Sichuan also added color to the celebrations. A 238-meter-long golden dragon led a parade across major tourist spots. The golden dragon demonstrated vigorous move accompanied by lively young lions. Together they symbolize the flourishing development of Macau. On the other hand, snake signifies nimbleness, a characteristic that inspires Macau citizens to pursue creativity and ingeniousness whilst striving for the welfare of Macau in unity. MGTO continues the tradition and distributes "Lai Si" to visitors during Lunar New Year. Starting on the 1st day of Lunar New Year, MGTO information counters distribute "Lai Si" containing phrases of New Year blessings while stock lasts. Each "Lai Si" also contains 10 cents for auspicious wishes. The Lunar New Year celebrations are held on the 1st and 2nd day of Lunar New Year. The programs are available on the MGTO's website http://www.macautourism.gov.mo
In addition, MGTO will host the grand evening outdoor Lunar New Year celebrations "Parade for the Celebration of the Year of the Snake" on the 3rd and 7th day of Lunar New year, with highlights including float parade, 1,000-artists performance, fireworks display and float exhibition, etc. The worship ceremony of the "Parade for the Celebration of the Year of the Snake" was held at Avenida Panorâmica do Lago Nam Van at 1 p.m. today. MGTO Director Fernandes and Chairman of IACM Administration Committee Tam Vai Man, etc. hosted the ceremony. During Lunar New Year, MGTO's "Tourism Hotline 2833 3000" maintains its 24-hour operator service to answer tourists' enquiries. This press release is available at: www.macautourism.gov.mo



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