Image designed by Gao Hongmei
The People's Republic of China (PRC) was founded on October 1, 1949, and on September 21 of the same year, China's new government passed the "Resolution on the National Day of the People's Republic of China," designating October 1 as China's National Day.
This year marks the 69th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.
After several modifications, it was decided that the Chinese mainland would observe a seven-day holiday (including two weekends) during National Day holiday, while Hong Kong will observe a day-long holiday and Macao will hold a two-day holiday, both are China's Special Administrative Regions (SARs).
During the one-week celebrations, several events will be held to commemorate the revolutionary martyrs who sacrificed their lives for the founding of the People's Republic of China.
China's Martyrs' Day, which comes just a day before China's National Day, is one of the most significant of them all.
China's National Day, also one of the longest holidays of the year, holds an immense value for the Chinese people. Even with changing times, the people have not forgotten their roots and the values behind the founding of the People's Republic of China.
In the run-up to the proud occasion, Beijing has been covered with flower decorations and festive plant sculptures. At the iconic Tian'anmen Square, a giant flower basket is attracting many tourists. During the National Day holiday, also known as "Golden Week," people enjoy their seven days off, making it China's most special week for tourism and visiting family and friends.
"The sky is blue and the flowers are beautiful in Beijing," Li Jicheng, a tourist from the Chengdu City in Sichuan Province told CCTV.
"The festival atmosphere is very strong," Li added.
The flag-raising ceremony at Tian'anmen Square is something that shouldn't be missed. According to a People's Daily report, there are 115,000 people from over China gathered to attend the ceremony during 2017 National Day celebrations.
Fourteen military parades have been conducted since the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949. Parades were held every year between 1949 and 1959. Since then, the most prominent National Day parades have taken place in 1984, 1999 and 2009 at the 35th, 50th and 60th anniversaries respectively.
FUN FACTS ABOUT GOLDEN WEEK
I. Golden Week or wedding season
In recent years, the National Day Golden Week has become the most popular time for weddings.The seven-day holiday makes it a perfect occasion to host auspicious ceremonies and invite family and friends.
In a way, it also brings immense good luck and prosperity because, according to the Chinese tradition, guests should give newlywed couples red envelopes containing money as blessings.
As per a China Daily's report, the common practice is to give no less than 300 to 500 yuan ($43 to $73), but sometimes it could be a three or four digit figure.
II. Golden Week or shopping week
Visiting relatives and friends also means exchanging gifts, wearing new clothes and eating delicious food.
People throng malls and local markets. Many shops also offer special holiday deals to attract more customers.
According to Sina's report, with the development of logistics and network and e-commerce websites, shopping has gradually become an important part of everyone's life. Major e-commerce and offline shopping malls have also grasped the heat of Golden Week and launched various promotional activities.
III. Travel or not travel
Relevant data from China Tourism Academy show that since 1999, the number of travelers during the Golden Week has increased significantly.
Also, in recent years, the government has introduced welfare policies such as reducing high-speed fares during festivals and holidays to encourage internal tourism.
According to the report, tourism has become the most important consumer feature of the Golden Week, driven by favorable conditions such as rising income, improving transportation infrastructure, the popularization of the Internet and smartphones, and relaxation of visas.
Also, the Golden Week has shown four major trends, including increasing enthusiasm for travel, upgrading consumption structure, disparity demand, and promotion of civilization.
Even more noteworthy is the Hong Kong section of the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link which started operation on September 23.
The national high-speed rail link between the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong will significantly boost tourism.
But despite so many convenient options, many people still feel that traveling during Golden Week is not a good choice.
Tips in Golden Week
I. Annual leave strategy
If the Mid-Autumn Festival holiday falls within this period, there are many people who will choose to extend a few days of the Golden Week leisure.
There's even a specific holiday recommendation, which gives you about 15 days off if you can ask five days paid annual leave off during that time. This refers only to the National Day of 2018.
II. To avoid...
General travel guides and websites advise people to avoid famous attractions during golden weeks. There are large crowds in transit everywhere in China at this time of year. Planning a journey in advance would be wise.
As a legal public holiday, National Day represents national coherence, which honors the predecessors' contribution and the country's bright future.
In fact, National Day is not just a Golden Week, but a day to be remembered by the Chinese people. While spending the leisure holiday, people should not forget the profound meaning of the establishment of this festival.