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Expats embrace Dragon Boat Festival traditions in Nantong

en.nantong.gov.cn Updated: 2023-07-03

The Foreign Affairs Office of the Nantong Municipal People's Government and Chongchuan district recently organized a Dragon Boat Festival celebration where 15 foreigners from countries including India, Morocco, and Indonesia experienced various festival customs with local residents.


Expats join local residents to perform a dragon dance. [Photo/Foreign Affairs Office of Nantong]

Two volunteer teams consisting of 34 seniors from Chongchuan showcased a dragon dance performance, which was later also joined by the expats. "The dragon dance is very interesting. It helped us learn about Chinese culture and traditions of Nantong," said a Nigerian international student.


Expats learn how to make zongzi from residents in Chongchuan district, Nantong, Jiangsu province. [Photo/Foreign Affairs Office of Nantong]

Local fishermen then explained the origin of the Dragon Boat Festival, which falls on June 22 this year, and demonstrated the process of making zongzi, a traditional food made of glutinous rice with various fillings wrapped in bamboo or reed leaves that is usually consumed on this occasion. Expats also learned how to weave fishing nets from the fishermen.

Several medical staff members from the Nantong No 2 People's Hospital were invited to teach expats to craft sachets, which is also a tradition of Dragon Boat Festival as wearing sachets can repel insects and prevent diseases. "I never expected that sachets made of Chinese herbal medicine could have such effects," said a student from Indonesia while showcasing his own sachet.

In recent years, the Foreign Affairs Office of Nantong has invited many foreigners in the city to sample local cuisine, appreciate the natural scenery, and experience folk customs, encouraging them to share the stories of Nantong and China to the world.