Traveling at this time of year you most certainly will hear a lot about "Tet". When you hear this in Vietnam it generally means TET NGUYEN DAN, which can literally be translated as “The Dawning Period” and means the starting time of a new lunar year. This year, Tet begins on February 10, 2013 and ends on February 12, 2013.
Even if you don't speak Vietnamese and granted it is not easily to pronounce correct it is a good idea to great people with sentences like:
Chúc Mừng Năm Mới (Chook moong numb moi): “Happy New Year” Or try something like "An khang thịnh vượng (Ang khang tinh vuong": “Security, good health, and prosperity.” or Cung hỉ phát tài (Khung he fak th-ai): from the Cantonese, “Gung hay fat choy” which means something like Congratulations and be prosperous or just Nhiều may mắn (nhew maye manh): “Good luck” !
People will be grateful. This year will be in the sign of the snake and you might like to visit one of the many fire works in Hanoi. There are supposed to be three major one at the following destinations:
- Hanoi Post Office
- Thong Nhat Park
- Lac Long Quan Park
- Van Quan Lake
- My Dinh National Stadium
This five major fire works but usually all the others as well, will start at midnight February, 10th.
So show your smiling face, don't scowl too much and relax at these important time of the Vietnamese year! The year of the junior dragon - this year the Black Water Snake - will accompany through 2013.