Are you looking to learn more about the traditional wedding customs of Taiwan?
From pre-wedding rituals to what to wear on your special day and even post-celebrations – there are a lot of unique Taiwanese wedding traditions to explore.
Whether it’s understanding why brides wear red or finding out how gifts are presented during a ceremony, exploring these cultural nuances can add an extra layer of meaning and significance for any couple.
Learn all about these beautiful Taiwanese wedding traditions in this comprehensive guide.
Taiwan Wedding Traditions
A typical Taiwanese wedding ceremony includes important steps like the bowing of parents, the exchange of rings, and the signing of marriage documents.
The bride and groom will also make offerings to their ancestors before officially tying the knot.
After exchanging vows, the bride and groom will bow to each other three times before being declared married.
Other traditional parts of a Taiwanese wedding ceremony include a tea ceremony, lion dancing, and dragon parades.
Traditional Taiwanese Wedding Attire
Taiwanese weddings are steeped in tradition, and the attire worn by both the bride and groom is no exception.
1. Traditional Wedding Attire
The traditional Taiwanese wedding outfit for brides consists of a long, red dress with intricate embroidery known as an “auspicious robe” or “good luck gown”.
This garment is usually made from luxurious fabrics such as silk or satin and often features gold accents like buttons, beading, or trim.
Brides also wear a headpiece called a “phoenix crown”, which is typically adorned with pearls and precious stones to symbolize wealth and prosperity.
Grooms traditionally wear a black jacket over white trousers known as an “eight-treasure suit”. This outfit is usually made from high-quality fabric such as velvet or brocade and may feature colorful embroidery on the lapels, cuffs, pockets, etc.
Grooms also don a hat that resembles those worn by ancient Chinese scholars during imperial examinations; this type of hat is referred to as an “academic cap”.
In addition to these garments, there are several accessories that are commonly used in Taiwanese weddings.
For example, brides may carry fans decorated with auspicious symbols while grooms often hold swords or scepters representing strength and power.
From the traditional attire to the various pre-wedding rituals, Taiwanese weddings are full of beautiful customs and traditions that will create lasting memories for any couple.
Let’s take a closer look at some of these special ceremonies.
These ceremonies serve to bring families together and create a bond between them. The most common pre-wedding rituals include the engagement ceremony, dowry presentation, and hair combing ceremony.
2. Engagement Ceremony
This is usually held at the bride’s home with both families present. During this ceremony, the groom will give his future wife a betrothal gift as a sign of commitment and love. Afterward, both sets of parents will exchange gifts such as tea or wine to signify their acceptance of each other’s family into their own lives.
3. Dowry Presentation
The dowry presentation takes place on the day before the wedding day itself. It is when the groom presents various items such as jewelry or furniture to his soon-to-be in-laws to show respect for them and thank them for raising their daughter well enough that she can now be married off successfully.
On her wedding day morning, it is traditional for female relatives from both sides of the family to gather around her. At the same time, they braid her hair into intricate designs, which symbolize good luck and prosperity in marriage life ahead. They also offer blessings during this time so that she may have a successful union with her husband going into adulthood.
The pre-wedding rituals are steeped in tradition and symbolize the joining of two families. As the wedding day approaches, couples can look forward to a beautiful celebration full of meaningful traditions that will carry them through their marriage.
Wedding Day Traditions
4. The Wedding Day
The Taiwanese wedding day is filled with many traditional customs and rituals. The tea ceremony is one of the most important traditions that take place on the big day.
During this ceremony, the bride and groom will serve tea to their parents to show respect for all they have done for them.
This act symbolizes gratitude, love, and appreciation toward their families.
The exchange of gifts and rings is another significant part of the wedding day tradition in Taiwan.
The couple will give each other presents, such as jewelry or watches, to signify their commitment to one another before exchanging rings during the ceremony itself. It’s also customary for guests to bring gifts like money or household items, which are presented at this time too.
Finally, there’s a reception banquet held after the wedding where friends and family gather together to celebrate the newlyweds’ union over food and drinks.
Guests typically bring congratulatory red envelopes containing cash as a gift for the couple while enjoying various dishes served by caterers throughout dinner service.
Afterward, everyone joins in on singing karaoke until late into the night.
From the solemn tea ceremony to exchanging rings and celebrating at a banquet, wedding day traditions in Taiwan are steeped in centuries of culture and tradition.
Procession of the Bride to the Groom’s House:
This tradition involves the bride being escorted from her home to her groom’s house by family members and friends in a procession with drums and music playing. The procession symbolizes joy and celebration as it makes its way through town.
5. Exchange of Vows and Rings
During this part of the ceremony, both partners exchange vows expressing their love for each other before exchanging rings as a sign of commitment.
Afterward, they bow to each other three times in respect while their families look on proudly.
6. Lighting of the Unity Candle
This ritual is often included in Taiwanese weddings as an expression of unity between two people who have decided to join together in marriage.
A single candle is lit by both partners at once, representing their union and all that comes with it – including good times ahead.
7. Reception and Banquet
Following these rituals, guests will gather for a reception banquet where food will be served along with speeches given by family members or close friends wishing them well on their journey together as husband and wife.
Traditional Taiwanese wedding feasts usually feature a variety of different dishes.
Popular menu items include sweet pork buns, fish-shaped cakes, steamed shrimp dumplings, and steamed chicken.
For dessert, guests are served taro cakes and egg custard pies. Dried fruits like longans and lychees are also often presented as part of the meal.
At some point during this event, guests may also participate in traditional games such as “red egg guessing” which involves predicting how many eggs will hatch out when boiled.
Traditional Taiwanese wedding music often features popular songs from Taiwan and mainland China.
Popular musical choices for the first dance include Mandarin love songs and Western classics like “Can’t Help Falling In Love”.
For the reception, guests usually dance to various genres, including Mandopop, C-pop, K-pop, and Traditional Chinese folk music.
Overall, these traditions are meant to bring luck, prosperity, harmony, and blessings to those involved in celebrating such an important milestone – tying two lives together forever.
Wedding day traditions are an important part of the wedding celebration and help to create lasting memories for both families.
As the wedding comes to close, post-wedding traditions continue the celebration and bring a new set of customs that mark this special occasion.
Post Wedding Celebrations
Post-wedding celebrations are an important part of Taiwanese culture. After the ceremony and reception, families often hold additional events to celebrate the newlyweds.
These include gift-giving ceremonies and honeymoon traditions.
9. Gift Giving Ceremony
This is a traditional event where family members give gifts to the couple as a sign of their love and support for them in their new life together.
Gifts can range from money or jewelry to household items such as kitchenware or furniture. It is customary for guests to bring envelopes with cash inside, which are presented during this ceremony.
As the newlyweds bask in the joy of their union, they will be showered with gifts and love from family and friends during post wedding celebrations.
10. Post Wedding Traditions
After the wedding ceremony, there are several rituals that must be observed to ensure a successful marriage.
Return of the Bride to Her Parents’ Home:
This is a traditional ritual where the bride returns to her parent’s home after the wedding ceremony. It symbolizes her transition from daughter-in-law to wife and marks her new role in society as a married woman.
The groom accompanies his bride during this journey, exchanging gifts with each other’s families before departing for their own home together.
In Taiwan, it is customary for couples to go on a honeymoon after their wedding day festivities have ended. Couples usually take trips around Taiwan or abroad, depending on their budget and preferences.
During these trips, they may visit famous tourist attractions or enjoy each other’s company away from home in romantic settings like beach resorts or mountain retreats.
Honeymoons also provide newlyweds with time alone together before returning home and adjusting back into everyday life with friends and family members who were not present at the wedding celebration itself.
Honeymoons are not just about romantic getaways; they can also be used as an opportunity for couples to bond with one another by participating in various activities like sightseeing or visiting temples around Taiwan.
Couples often go on honeymoons with close family members who help guide them through different cultural experiences while providing support along the way, making it all part of a memorable experience.
Taiwanese wedding traditions are a beautiful way to honor the couple’s union and celebrate their love.
From traditional attire to pre-wedding rituals, wedding day traditions, and post-wedding celebrations, these customs provide an unforgettable experience for all involved.
Whether you’re looking for ideas on how to incorporate Taiwanese wedding traditions into your special day or want to learn more about this unique culture, there is something here for everyone.