It is the first time in 3 years I am actually in mainland China to experience Chinese New Year. Before it was in Shanghai. This time it is in Haikou. A lot of the buildings in Shanghai are tall, but they don’t have windows that can be opened on high floors. That meant the fireworks were all at street level. It was chaotic for cars. In Haikou, windows open on the higher floors, so I have been able to see a lot of people shooting fireworkers out of the windows. Sometimes they hit other nearby tall buildings before detonating. There are also people setting off fireworks at street level. It reminds me a lot of two years ago when I went to Macau around Chinese New Year. They ban detonating fireworks in the city except for a special area near the waterfront. The provided area is quite small, and a lot of people go in and set off fireworks as they please. Fireworks go every which way, and you have to be careful not to get hit. Especially with the strong winds often coming from the sea. Haikou is a lot like that, though it is not limited to one area.
Otherwise, Haikou is not that special for Chinese New Year. It is a family day, kind of like Christmas in western countries, so everything is closed or closed early today. There is also special broadcasting on TV to commemorate the day. CCTV has a special broadcast, and apparently all the other channels think so too. 12 out of the 43 channels on TV are all showing the same programming.
For the casual visitor, I think Chinese New Year is better spent in a large Chinatown overseas. It is more publicly festive. But since I have already experienced that in several places, I am happy with the fireworks warzone Haikou has become tonight.