A Handy Guide to the Year of the Ox

2020 was Year of the Rat, which turned out to be quite fitting after the entire world succumbed to the plague of COVID-19. This year normality is (hopefully) on the horizon and it’ll be an extra good year for you if you’re an Ox. Referred to as Niu Nian (牛年), niu is also Chinese for cow, but don’t let that confuse you (we had that with rat and mouse last year), in this instance it means ox. If you were born in 1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997 or 2009, you’re an Ox, and we’ve put a quick guide together to explain everything you need to know about your zodiac animal. Happy Niu Year! See what we did there? You can use that one…

Learn some lucky tips for the year of the ox.

Personality Traits and Characteristics

If you are an Ox you are honest, diligent, dependable, strong and determined. You work hard in the background and aren’t influenced by others or your environment. While you’ll receive praise for your efforts, you won’t be seen demanding it and you rarely lose your temper and have great logic and leadership qualities. 

The ox is usually associated with being strong and hard-working. (Photo/Mustafa Patel)

Lucky Numbers

One and four are lucky numbers (also numbers containing them like 14 and 41), so maybe throw it back with a bit of Sum 41 next time you go to KTV or karaoke. Five and six on the other hand are seen as unlucky, so saying 六六六 (666) won’t be as cool this year and maybe don’t give out too many high-fives… 

Lucky Colors

White, yellow and green are lucky, whereas blue is not (sorry KMT, the Blue Line 板南線, and most of the Pocari Sweat label). We’re taking green being a lucky color as the perfect excuse to head into the forests, of which Taiwan has plenty. Head to Alishan, the forest recreation area in Kenting, or even lesser-known Xitou to experience some of the country’s very best forested areas, ancient trees and all. (Read more: Into the mountain forests of Hsinchu)

Enjoy the greenery of forests in Taiwan.

Lucky Directions

North and south are lucky, while southwest in particular is not. So, you can visit Taipei and Pingtung but maybe not Kaohsiung? If you want to go to Penghu and Tainan you have to decide for yourself just how southwest they are. Our advice? Visit all these places anyway. Nobody is telling you what to do, you’re an Ox! (Here’s one option for your New Year trip: 8 Things To Do When Traveling With Kids in Kaohsiung)

Or visit Xiaoliuqiu for both forests and beaches.

Romance and Love

You’re best compatible with Rats, Monkeys and Roosters, while you’re looking for trouble if you’re dabbling with Tigers, Dragons, Goats and Horses. If you have an Ox in your sights, be sure to note that they enjoy solitude, but if they do want a partner, they’re in it for the long haul. 

Famous Oxen

There are many famous oxen that can be identified for their strong ox-like characteristics, such as Barak Obama and Vincent van Gogh. And despite creating the world’s most famous mouse, Walt Disney himself is an Ox.

Other celebrities include: Margaret Thatcher, George Clooney, Adolf Hitler, Cristiano Ronaldo, Charlie Chaplin, Napoleon Bonaparte, Richard Nixon, Keira Knightley, Hans Christian Andersen, Princess Diana, Sachin Tendulkar, Pablo Escobar, Morgan Freeman, Malcolm X, Eddie Murphy, Seth MacFarlane, Gal Gadot, Ricky Gervais, Lana Del Ray, Ciara, Wayne Rooney, David Hockney. 

If you are celebrating Lunar New Year in Taiwan…

(cover photo/upsplash)