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IELTS Speaking Sample Part 2 - Describe an important holiday that is celebrated in your country

Updated: Oct 18, 2023

Describe an important holiday that is celebrated in your country

You should say

  • when this celebration takes place

  • what people do during this celebration

  • what you especially like and dislike about this celebration

  • and explain why it is important

Among the various national holidays in Vietnam, Tet, normally observed in late January or early and mid-February, is definitely the most important festival and it holds significant meaning as it’s not just the time when the old year is over and the new year is celebrated. It’s the quality time to spend with our nearest and dearest that makes Tet so special and unique.

By tradition, houses are thoroughly cleaned in preparation for Tet. People also purchase many kinds of plants, trees and flowers like kumquat trees, peach blossom or apricot blossom to decorate their houses. In addition, many Vietnamese prepare for Tet by cooking some delicacies such as square sticky rice cake, dried bamboo shoot soup, jellied meat or caramelized pork and eggs. Sweet treats like dried candied fruits or seeds and nuts are also displayed for sale in local street markets as well as supermarkets or shopping malls.

There are certain things to observe during Tet and of course so many things to avoid. The fireworks start on New Year's Eve and many Vietnamese people, especially the younger generations tend to flock to some popular locations like Nguyen Hue Walking Street to watch these and celebrate the beginning of a brand-new year. Also, according to tradition, first-footing on New Year's Eve is deemed crucial as this can influence the new year's fortune. Vietnamese people often wish each other peace, health, luck and prosperity for the upcoming year. For many children, however, the very special thing that they often look forward to is receiving lucky money in red envelopes from the older family members or guests.

There are some taboos as well. Sweeping during Tet is considered unlucky as it means sweeping away all the luck. What’s more, it’s not a good idea for anyone who experienced a recent loss of a family member to visit others during Tet.

I reckon that Tet means a lot to me and the dearest people in my life. It’s not just a celebration of a new year, but it’s more like a time for reunions, a moment to reflect (up)on what's happened and prepare for the fresh starts, and most importantly, an occasion to enjoy ourselves, recharge our batteries as well as cherish the most valuable things in life.



  • observe sth : ăn mừng (1 lễ hội nào đó)

  • hold significant meaning : có ý nghĩa quan trọng

  • quality time : khoảng thời gian dành trọn cho ai đó

  • one’s nearest and dearest : những người thân trong gia đình và bạn bè thân thiết

  • by tradition = according to tradition : theo như truyền thống

  • thoroughly : kĩ lưỡng, kĩ càng

  • kumquat trees : cây quất, cây tắc

  • peach blossom : hoa đào

  • apricot blossom : hoa mai

  • delicacies : các món đặc sản, món ăn đặc trưng

  • square sticky rice cake : bánh chưng

  • dried bamboo shoot soup : canh măng

  • jellied meat : thịt đông

  • caramelized pork and eggs : thịt kho tàu

  • sweet treats : các món ngọt ăn vặt

  • dried candied fruits : mứt Tết

  • fireworks : trình diễn pháo hoa

  • flock : đổ xô đến đâu đó

  • first-footing : tục xông đất đầu năm

  • be deemed crucial : được xem là rất quan trọng

  • new year's fortune : vận may trong năm mới

  • prosperity : sự giàu có, thịnh vượng

  • upcoming : sắp tới, sắp đến

  • lucky money : tiền lì xì, tiền mừng tuổi

  • red envelopes : phong bì đỏ

  • taboos : những điều cấm kị, kiêng kị

  • sweeping : quét nhà

  • reunions : những cuộc đoàn tụ

  • reflect (up)on sth : suy ngẫm về gì đó

  • fresh starts : những khởi đầu mới

  • recharge one’s batteries : nạp lại năng lượng

  • cherish sth : trân trọng, trân quý điều gì đó

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