Dragon boat tradition in south China is returning to South China as COVID retreats

As restrictions have been lifted and COVID-19 cases are down, the dragon boat tradition was seen returning to China's parts on Friday.

Dragon boat tradition in south China is returning to South China as COVID retreats

As restrictions have been lifted and COVID-19 cases are down, the dragon boat tradition was seen returning to China's parts on Friday.

Guangzhou's historic Lychee Bay scenic area hosted boat displays and other low-key celebrations to commemorate the 2200 year anniversary of the death of Qu Yuan, a revered poet and minister of the government.

Although restrictions on the duration of events and the number of people attending were in place, they did not dampen the mood.

The holiday includes traditional boat races featuring up to 12 paddlers, but they were cancelled this year due to pandemic conditions. There are also displays and community gatherings.

China has only 74 COVID-19 new cases. Shanghai's restrictions were eased on Friday, after being under tight lockdown for over two months.

Although travel restrictions, testing requirements and mask mandates still exist, the country is slowly emerging from the hard-line "zero COVID" policy, which has thwarted the domestic economy as well as severely restricted global supply chains.

June, a Guangzhou native, said that it was a relief finally to be able enjoy the festival after two years of cancellations.

He said, "I feel especially excited and happy." He was one of the spectators who watched the Panting village crews compete in the beautifully-decorated boats that measured 38 meters (125 feet).

Wang Haoran, a Chinese tourist who hails from Inner Mongolia, in China's far north said that he had only seen the festival via books and television.

Wang stated that Wang was unable to grasp the magnitude of the event.

Traditions of the dragon boat date back to 500 years ago, and locals began displaying them as folk art and craftsmanship a century earlier.

Small businesses were also pleased by the return of the dragon boat celebrations.

It's great for tourists as well as other parties. Ji Tuhui, who owns a small bakery that sells traditional Cantonese pastries, said there will be lively scenes again.

Ji stated that although business is not yet back to pre-pandemic levels of normality, Friday's dragonboat performance attracted tourists and their spending money.

"This is an unforgettable event. It's okay. We were able hold this event in such strict conditions," he stated.

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