10 Activities Tet Holiday in Vietnam That Most People Do As Traditions

10 Activities Tet Holiday in Vietnam That Most People Do As Traditions

If you inquire about the most significant, vibrant, and pivotal festival in Vietnam, the unequivocal response is Tet, also known as the Vietnamese Lunar New Year Festival. This festive period encompasses a myriad of exciting activities, with people donning smiles and exhibiting utmost kindness in anticipation of a year filled with luck, happiness, and prosperity. If you're curious about Vietnamese Tet traditions, explore the top 10 below.

1. Clean the houses to prepare for Tet holiday

To prepare for Tet holiday, local families do a thorough cleaning of their houses in the days before the New Year comes. The floors will be swept to be clean, windows will be scrubbed, and furniture will be free from dust so that the houses become clean and neat to welcome the most special festival of the year. This traditional activity aims to sweep away anything bad of the past year. In addition, sweeping is a taboo on the New Year’s Day because the locals believe that the good fortune and luck will be swept away.

Clean the houses to prepare for Tet holiday

2: Decorate the houses to beautify the living environment and welcome good luck

A prevalent Tet tradition in Vietnam involves embellishing homes with vibrant hues, with red and yellow being particularly popular. The beautifully adorned houses and storefronts in Vietnam, primarily with the dominant red color, create an exciting and lively atmosphere. In accordance with Asian beliefs associating red with wealth and luck, streets and houses feature prominent red lanterns, and doors and windows are adorned with cute red paper shapes. Additionally, some Vietnamese households incorporate kumquat trees in the living room, symbolizing fruitfulness. Furthermore, decorations featuring cherry blossoms and apricot flowers add to the aesthetic appeal of the surroundings.

3: Celebrate Kitchen God’s Day on December 23rd

The tradition kept from generation to generation of the Vietnamese is to celebrate the Kitchen God’s Day on December 23rd of the Lunar Calendar. On this day, people will clean the kitchen as well as the statues of the Kitchen God, parole the carps which are said to take the deities to report to the Jade Emperor. In the evening, family members are expected to prepare good meals, burn incenses, and pray as the rituals to send the Kitchen God to heaven.

Celebrate Kitchen God’s Day on December 23rd

4: Have Year-end Parties

On the last days of the past Lunar Year, people will gather to have year-end parties with food, drinks, and laughter. Some might be interested in sharing their life events and achievements of the year to the others and create more nice memories together before saying goodbye to the past year. If you walk on the local streets this time, it’s usual to see lots of restaurants and eateries full of patrons who are celebrating the nights altogether.

Click this code to unlock your special offer when coming Vietnam

5: Pay debts and avoid arguments

Unsettled debts and unresolved conflicts are akin to unwanted "baggage" or "misfortune" that one should strive to eliminate before the arrival of the New Year. This is why a significant number of Vietnamese individuals make a concerted effort to clear their outstanding debts, let go of minor disputes, and steer clear of arguments. Additionally, they adopt a positive demeanor, smiling and behaving with utmost kindness. This sense of closure not only brings happiness but also enhances the anticipation of a more prosperous New Year.

Be ready to welcome the lunar new year!

6: Pray for the best in the Buddhist pagodas and temples

The Lunar New Year in Vietnam marks the busy time for the Buddhists and pilgrims who go worshipping in the pagodas and temples to pray for blessings and luck in the New Year. Burning the incenses at the beginning of the year also provides peace of mind. That is why you see the pagodas crowded with visitors, flowers, and incenses. Some people give offerings to the deities and Buddha statues, hoping that the intangible powers will bless and protect them.

7: Cook Vietnamese traditional food for Tet

Days before the event, families cook the traditional food for Tet, namely the Banh Chung and Banh Day (kinds of steamed rice cakes). It takes hours to cook the cakes, and family members usually take turns to keep eyes on the cooking fire overnight. Meanwhile, they prefer telling their life stories, events, news, etc., of the past year. Sharing and mingling with each other are the beautiful customs in the days leading up to the Lunar New Year.

Nem – Vietnamese spring rolls

8: Exchange the New Year’s greetings and Lucky Money inside red envelopes

As a long-lasting custom, the Vietnamese love exchanging the New Year’s greetings to each other on the first day of the Lunar New Year. Along with that, they give red envelopes including Lucky Money to the children and elders. The kids are expected to give greetings to their grandparents, parents, relatives, and other seniors in order to receive the Lucky Money in return. The recipients of red envelopes will feel that they are lucky and happy.

9: Invite a person of good fortune to visit a house (Xong Nha or Xong Dat)

Mainly in the northern regions of Vietnam, the host family keeps a tradition to invite a person of good fortune to visit their house, which is said to bring good luck for the whole coming year. In a common belief, they invite a joyous person whose zodiac is good for the homeowner. The first guest to the home on the first day of the year is very important and leaves a huge influence on the following year of the host family.

Invite a person of good fortune to visit a house on first days of lunar new year

10: Go to the New Year’s markets of flowers and clothes

Engaging in leisurely activities, capturing moments through photography, and strolling through the bustling New Year's flower markets are cherished pastimes for all Vietnamese. These vibrant markets inspire people to take photos and purchase potted flowers to bring home for decorations. Moreover, the open-air markets offer a diverse array of items, including red envelopes, decorations, clothing, trinkets, red lanterns, potted plants, and more, creating an atmosphere that encourages cheerful spending.

Now armed with knowledge of the 10 traditional Tet activities in Vietnam, it's your turn to immerse yourself and share with the world how you might come to appreciate the Vietnamese Tet.


Knowledge sharing about Vietnam food culture and traditional recipes.

Come to Vietnam and immerse yourself in the unique Tet cultures awaiting you.

We cordially invite our international friends to explore Vietnam, with a special focus on Ho Chi Minh City and the Mekong Delta starting from Ho Chi Minh City. It's an opportunity to discover the refined cultural beauty via these tour:

1-day Mekong tour from Can Tho | The Myst Mekong

Cu Chi Tunnels & Mekong Rural Life 

Mekong Delta 1 Day Tour - Ben Tre boat and bike experience

Mekong delta homestay 2 days tour with cycling trip in non touristy villages

Mekong delta tour 3 days with homestay - cycling - Cai Rang floating market 

Come and immerse yourself in the captivating charm of Vietnam, where tradition and modernity coalesce, creating an unforgettable experience. Your journey awaits, filled with the warmth of Vietnamese hospitality and the richness of its cultural tapestry.

Your extraordinary experience begins here!

Click this code to unlock your special offer when coming Off the Beaten Track Mekong Delta 

JOIN OUR FACEBOOK GROUP HERE to learn our tips as well as discuss them before going to these locations.

Be sure not to miss out on our special offer when you join us for this experience.