Out and about

Updated: 2013-12-29 08:19

(China Daily)

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Stroll down memory lane

If you are entertaining guests at this time of year and looking to get some exercise outdoors before partying on New Year's Eve, this free tour of some of Shanghai's historic sites could be just the tonic. The informative walk, which is being organized by Genuine China Tours, only requires you to sign up by contacting the agency by phone or e-mail.

10 am-4 pm, Dec 31. China Genuine Tours, 553 Maotai Lu (Road), Changning district. 021-5153-1602. ct@zhenshilvyou.com.

Adopt a kitten

Spread some post-Christmas cheer to the domesticated animal kingdom and of course your own home by adopting a cat or kitten at this open event, which runs most weekends. All of the animals are sterilized, immunized and treated for parasites, according to Paw Pals Animal Rescue. The center has about 70 felines awaiting a new home.

1-5 pm, Saturdays and Sundays. Paw Pals Animal Rescue in Shanghai, Minhang district. 021-5480-1699. ppar_sh@163.com.

Cosmic gold

Cirque le Soir may serve as one of the coolest places to usher in the New Year due to its mixture of circus freaks, acrobats and high-flying patrons, not to mention its prime Bund location. The club's Cosmic Gold New Year's Eve Party is running under the banner "Radiance and Luster", with a dress code to match. Tickets cost 400 yuan ($66) on the door or 300 yuan presale. Both include a complimentary glass of bubbly.

9 pm, Dec 31. Cirque le Soir, 22 Zhongshan Donglu (East Road), near Xin Yongan Lu (Road), 400-991-0088 (bookings).

- Matt Hodges

Hong Kong

Countdown, New Year

Come Dec 31, every bar, restaurant and space will be throwing a New Year's Eve party. If you're out and about and want to avoid the crowds around Victoria Harbor for the 8-minute pyromusical countdown display, try a more exclusively epicurean event at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre, or even further away for Sha Tin Park's fireworks.

8 pm until late, Dec 31. Concert Hall, Hong Kong Cultural Centre. Tsim Sha Tsui. Admission HK$160-420 ($20-55).

852-2721-2030. hkphil.org.

Sha Tin Park, Sha Tin Town Hall Plaza and City Art Square. 852-2591-1340. Free. lcsd.gov.hk/eo.

Liars' League HK

Hong Kong's Liars league is a monthly injection of live short fiction featuring professional actors performing the best in original fiction submitted by Chinese and international authors. You may have caught one of the league's themed events in London or New York, and this Hong Kong iteration is all about "Blessings & Curses". Violist William Lane will also perform, and, of course, its all free and BYO.

8 pm, Dec 30. XXX Gallery, B/F, 353-363 Des Voeux Road. West, Sai Ying Pun. liarsleaguehk.blogspot.hk.

Dragon and lion dance extravaganza

If you're not at dim sum or still in bed Jan 1 afternoon, catch Hong Kong's biggest parade of the year winding its way through Tsim Sha Tsui. The traditional Chinese parade features more than 530 mascots. The route starts at Canton Rd and will run along the Avenue of Stars finishing at UC Centenary Garden.

1:30-5 pm, Jan 1. Tsim Sha Tsui, various locations.

- Timo Chui


Bollywood New Year party

Let's have a Bollywood New Year party where guests dance to Bollywood songs played by a DJ from Mumbai and enjoy a feast of mouth-watering Indian BBQ. The Guangzhou Indian Community, which is under the patronage of the Consulate General of India in Guangzhou, is organizing the event at Party Pier in Guangzhou on Dec 31. It's a family party, so kids are allowed. Some special attractions prepared for these little guests include clowns and popcorn made on-site. To better enjoy the party, parents can also bring nannies to take care of kids at discounted rates. For entry passes, please contact the Indian Consulate in Guangzhou.

9 pm-1:30 am, Dec 31. Dates (behind the Beer Museum), Party Pier, Yuejiang Xilu (West Road), Haizhu district. 134-3028-1140.

- Xu Jingxi


Martial arts for kids

Capoeira, a martial art that combines fighting moves with dancing and music, is an art form with a history that dates to the era of African slavery in Brazil. Capoeira Mandinga Beijing offers youngsters ages 4-10 a chance to try it out with a kids' session on Saturdays. A single class is 100 yuan, or sign up for a 14-week session for 1,120 yuan. (There's an extra discount for siblings who sign up at the same time.)

4-5 pm, Saturdays. East Gate Plaza, 29 Dongzhong Jie (Street), Block B, Basement 1. 186-1170-5854. capoeirabeijing.com.

Sample Chinese culture

If you're new to China - or just want to explore a topic in more depth - the China Culture Center offers a revolving schedule of classes every month. You can study calligraphy, join a seasonal tea tasting, practice meditation or Chinese bird-and-flower painting, and much more. The center has also organized trips around China and nearby regions, including northern Thailand, Laos and Myanmar in the weeks ahead. Book early for the Spring Festival period. For more details and a complete schedule of classes, day trips and extended travel, visit chinaculturecenter.org.

Coffee klatch

The International Newcomers Network's Coffee Mornings are purely social events in local cafes that allow you to get to know people who live close by, plus pick up a few tips and tricks from those who have been around the neighborhood awhile. There are monthly coffees at several locations around the capital, including The Bookworm in Sanlitun. For a schedule with locations and maps, see innbeijing.org.

- Mike Peters

(China Daily 12/29/2013 page5)