Vietnamese community in Czechia welcomes the Year of the Dragon

The local Vietnamese community is celebrating the Lunar New Year this weekend with with family, food, and cultural festivities. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 10.02.2024 09:44:00 (updated on 10.02.2024) Reading time: 2 minutes

As the Lunar New Year dawns, Vietnamese communities across the Czech Republic are celebrating the arrival of the Year of the Dragon this weekend. The occasion, which began on Feb. 9 at 6 p.m. Prague time (midnight in Vietnam), marks a time of family, tradition, and cultural significance.

For the Vietnamese community in the Czech Republic, welcoming the Lunar New Year, known as Tết Nguyễn Đán, is the pinnacle of the cultural calendar. More than 66,000 Vietnamese passport holders reside in Czechia, with an additional 100,000 people of Vietnamese origin living in the country. The celebration of Tết holds special significance, bridging their heritage with their present lives.

"We celebrate the New Year a little less extravagantly than back home," Hong Cuong Nguyen, a 33-year-old restaurant operator who has resided in the Czech Republic for seven years, tells CNN Prima News. "There we would cook ten meals for the holiday, here only five."

Central to the Lunar New Year festivities is the preparation of traditional dishes, whcih symbolize prosperity and familial unity. Among these delicacies is chả lụa or giò lụa, a Vietnamese pork sausage served during the holidays, and meticulously prepared by families like Nguyen's.

Despite the distance from their homeland, Vietnamese families living in the Czech Republic strive to recreate the flavors and customs of Vietnam, albeit with some adjustments due to local ingredient availability.

The celebration extends beyond culinary delights, encompassing cherished customs such as the exchange of red envelopes. These envelopes, filled with financial donations, symbolize blessings of prosperity and happiness for the recipient.

There are rules governing their distribution, emphasizing generosity and community spirit; those with good jobs or who are well off should not receive anything, and instead give to others, Nguyen explains.


Beyond the confines of family celebrations, the Lunar New Year serves as a testament to the enduring spirit of the Czech Vietnamese community. The third largest ethnic minority in the Czech Republic (after Slovaks and Ukrainians), they have woven themselves into the fabric of Czech society since the communist era.

As the Year of the Dragon unfolds, Vietnamese families in the Czech Republic gather to honor their roots, strengthen familial bonds, and usher in a new year filled with hope, prosperity, and tradition.

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