Exploring Qingming Festival Traditions, History, and Celebrations

Qingming Festival, also known as Tomb-Sweeping Day, is a traditional Chinese festival that falls on the 15th day after the Spring Equinox. It is a time for people to honour their ancestors, sweep tombs, and enjoy the outdoors as springtime blooms. The festival has a history of over 2500 years and holds great cultural significance in Chinese society.

1. Traditions and Customs

Tomb Sweeping

One of the most important traditions of Qingming Festival is tomb sweeping. Families visit the gravesites of their ancestors to clean the tombs, offer food and incense, and pay their respects. This act is believed to show filial piety and honour the deceased.

Flying Kites

Another popular tradition during Qingming Festival is flying kites. It is said that flying kites during this time helps to ward off evil spirits and bring good luck. Many people, especially children, take this opportunity to fly colourful kites in parks and open spaces.

Eating Qingtuan

Qingtuan, a traditional green rice ball made from glutinous rice and barley grass, is a special food eaten during Qingming Festival. It symbolizes the coming of spring and new beginnings. Families often gather to make and enjoy qingtuan together.

2. History of Qingming Festival

Qingming Festival has its roots in ancient China and can be traced back to the Zhou Dynasty. It was originally a time to commemorate a loyal official named Jie Zitui, who sacrificed himself to save his prince. Over time, the festival evolved to include honouring all ancestors and loved ones who have passed away.

Qing Ming Festival is celebrated annually in China. The Source of the Photo: https://www.chinadaily.com.cn/culture/2016-04/02/content_24249596_5.htm


3. Modern Celebrations

In modern times, Qingming Festival is still widely observed in China and other parts of Asia. People take time off work to visit cemeteries, clean tombs, and offer sacrifices. It is also a time for families to come together, enjoy nature, and appreciate the beauty of spring.


In conclusion, Qingming Festival is a time-honoured tradition that celebrates family, remembrance, and the beauty of nature. By participating in the customs and rituals of this festival, people can connect with their heritage and pay tribute to those who came before them.