The fifth day of the fifth month of the lunar calendar each year is the Dragon Boat Festival, one of the four traditional Chinese festivals. In ancient times the Dragon Boat Festival was a summer festival to ward off plague and to worship the Dragon Totem.
It is also believed that Qu Yuan, a patriotic poet of the Chu Dynasty during the Warring States period, threw himself into the river on this day and there are many folk customs at the Dragon Boat Festival to commemorate Qu Yuan.
Zongzi is the traditional food of the Dragon Boat Festival. As early as in the Eastern Han Dynasty of China, people were already accustomed to eating zongzi. In the Jingchu region, people put zongzi into the river to worship Qu Yuan.
The main material of zongzi is glutinous rice, filling and wrapped with leaves. Nowadays, there are various variations of zongzi around China, with fillings such as salted meat, bean paste, egg yolk, red dates, etc. In general, the taste is divided into two types of salty and sweet. The following are recommendations for tasty zongzi stores around Shanghai, where there are many long-established brands of zongzi.
Wu Fang Zhai
Location: No.28, South Yunnan Road, Huangpu District
Opening Hours: 07:00-21:00
Recommendation: Wufang egg yolk meat zongzi, Xiaolongbao
Location: No. 8, Lane 1569, North Sichuan Road, Hongkou District
Opening hours: 10:00-17:00
Recommendation: Sausage, egg yolk and meat zongzi, red bean and honey date zongzi
Old Shanghai Zongzi
Location: Entrance to the first floor of Yangge KTV, No. 702 Linfen Road, Jing’an District
Friday to Saturday 08:30-23:00
Monday to Thursday, Sunday
Recommendation: Big meat zongzi
Dragon Boat Racing
Dragon Boat Racing is a multi-player collective paddling competition, the origin of which can be traced back to the Warring States period and has been introduced to Japan and Vietnam, etc. In 2011, dragon boat racing was approved to be included in the third batch of national intangible cultural heritage list.
Hanging Artemisia argyi Levl. et Van
Artemisia argyi Levl. et Van has been used as a medicinal plant in ancient China, and the moxibustion method in acupuncture uses mugwort as the main ingredient. This is why it was believed that mugwort could attract all kinds of blessings and be hung on the door for good health.
Wear incense packets
At the Dragon Boat Festival, incense packs are hung on the chest with five-colored threads in a variety of shapes, and the packs are filled with spices to ward off the plague, drive away evil and ensure peace.