Lantern Festival Riddles

In Chinese by Gwilym James

Lantern Festival (Yuánxiāo jié (元宵节) ) is the first significant holiday after the Lunar New Year break. It coincides with the first full moon of the month, and is synonymous with beautiful and intricate lanterns, eating glutinous rice balls (汤圆), and getting together with family and friends.

There is also a tradition of solving character riddles on lanterns (猜灯谜 cāi dēngmí). Traditionally, these riddles are played at local temple fairs, but you’ll also see them online, just like in this blog post! If you know the answer, you can win a prize at the temple for correctly guessing.

We think these character puzzles are also fun for Chinese learners. Swipe on the images below to have a go.

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