Taipei lanterns

How the world will be celebrating

Almost one sixth of the world's population will celebrate the dawn of the year of the goat today, from China to London and San Francisco, via Malaysia and Singapore.

As well as 2015 babies, anyone born in 1919, 1931, 1943, 1967, 1979, 1991 or 2003 also come under the year of the goat, although the Chinese character, yang, can also be translated as sheep or ram.

It is the eighth year of the 12-year Chinese zodiac, and its lucky numbers are three, four and nine and lucky flowers are carnation, primrose and Alice flower. Anyone born in a goat year should avoid inauspicious coffee or gold.

Celebrations in London, which many claim are the biggest outside Asia, will take place on Sunday, but big parades and processions are also taking place in San Francisco, Singapore, Malaysia, Taiwan and Hong Kong, as well as Shanghai, Beijing and Harbin.


Common to all will be lion and dragon costumes, traditional dance, drums and fireworks.