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Holidays : China: Fujian : Ningde Attractions : The unique String Lion Dance of Huotong in Ningde, East Fujian

The unique String Lion Dance of Huotong in Ningde, East Fujian

Many people have seen a Lion Dance on TV or in person. However, few people know about the String Lion Dance, which can be only seen in Huotong, Ningde. Unlike the Lion Dance, the String Lion Dance is controlled by strings that link to the lions. People make the lions do various moves by pulling up and down the strings.


The Huotong String Lion Dance originates in the Ming Dynasty and has been playing an important role in the performances during the festival celebration. It is an important folk art in Ningde, which can only be seen on February 15 of the Lunar Calendar. 

Since its birth, the Ningde String Lion Dance has been popular with a lot of people. It has been staged in many places such as Hongkong, Macao, and some provinces in the mainland. In 2006, it was listed in the first national cultural heritage list.



Unlike Lion Dance, String Lion Dance is controlled by strings link to the lions

As for the string lion, it is usually made from Mao bamboo covered with cotton paper and cloth. A big lion can be 70 kg, while a small one can be 30 kg. Therefore, to control these lions, one needs physical strength as well as excellent skills.

During the performance, the controllers usually stand behind the stage. A big lion is usually controlled by 6 people and the small ones are controlled by 1 or 2 people. Any movement of the lions needs the coordination of the controllers.

There are various moves of the lions such as lions playing balls, lion uncovering Spring Festival couplets, and others. Along with the lighting effect and background music, the whole performance is very wonderful for the audience.

At the night of February15 of the Lunar Calendar, the street of Huotong becomes very busy and filled with jollification. in addition to the String Lion Dance, there are many other local performances like the Dragon dance, Wu Song Fights the Tiger, and others.

How to get there:


Click map to enlarge

1) Self-driving:
Drive to Ningde by Quanxia Highway, then Fuquan Highway and then Luoning Highway→ drive from Ningde to Huotong County by national highway G104.

2) Use a travel agent:
Renting a van packaged with driver is the next best alternative. Call Apple Travel to organize a group tour. If you’ve a small group, The ideal number in the group is 5 or 6.






Apple Travel Xiamen Office (Main Office)

Address: Shop 18-20,Guanren Rd (behind the Marco Polo Hotel)
361006 Xiamen, Fujian Province, China
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