Yong Hua Chinese Restaurant

REVIEW

AMENITIES:

  • Limited lot parking
  • Takeaways
  • Reservation
  • Good for groups
  • Good for kids
  • Waiter service

FOOD: 3/5
SERVICE: 3/5
AMBIENCE: 3/5


LOCATION: J. D. Gomperstraat 136, Paramaribo, Suriname (beside Best Mart)

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How to Holi in Suriname

Holi Phagwa also known as the Festival of Colors is celebrated every March in Suriname. It marks the victory of good over evil. It is a celebration where people (friends or strangers alike) smeared each other with different colors as a sign of love and belongingness.

In other Hindu tradition, it is a day for leaving the past and conflicts behind. It also signifies the coming of the new season, Spring, and people symbolized it as a start of a new beginning.

HOW TO HOLI IN SURINAME:

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Sipaliwini Village

Sipaliwini is an Indian village found in the Sipaliwini District (the border of Suriname and Brazil). It takes a 2-hour flight from Suriname and 2 hours back via the Cessna 206. There are only 2 to 3 flights per month, mostly government flights.

The inhabitants of Sipaliwini are the Tiriyó Indians. Most of them are also found in Kwamalasamuto, another village close by. It is a closed community where the men hunt and provide the food while the women cook. Electricity is available only if there is enough fuel.

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The Suriname government sends them food and supplies every month including distilled waters and soda drinks. The Tiriyó Indians speak the Tiriyó language, but most of them speak Dutch, too.

Sipaliwini is surrounded by the Sipaliwini river and tropical rainforests that supply a rich variety of food and natural resources to the locals. They also use kayaks for fishing and to travel to nearby villages. Their traditional lifestyle and survival skills are few of the things that I admire about them.

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Sipaliwini River
HOW TO GET THERE:

Take a plane from Zorg en Hoop Airport. Cost of flight is around 500 to 600 USD roundtrip.

Location: Sipaliwini District, Suriname

The Road Taken

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Keti Koti 2016 in Suriname

Keti Koti is a Sranantongo word that means “the chains are broken” or “the chains are cut”. It marks the end of slavery in Suriname from the Netherlands in July 1, 1863.

Keti Koti became a national holiday and is celebrated every July 1 in Suriname, Dutch Antilles and in major Dutch cities like Amsterdam and Rotterdam.

People of different ethnicity would gather in the Palmentuin to commemorate the event. Most women and children are seen wearing the traditional creole costume called the Kotomisi (a colorful layered fabric that comes with a creatively folded headscarf).

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Locals selling Angisa or Anisa, a kind of head dress or body covering
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Girls wearing kotomisi with Surinamese flags

The Kotomisi were originally worn by Surinamese slaves during the 18th and 19th century to make the women look ugly or unattractive. The purpose of this was to prevent any sexual assaults from their masters. These slaves came from Africa and were brought to Suriname to work in the sugarcane plantations.

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We went to the Palmentuin late in the afternoon. The place was already crowded. We missed most of the presentations because they were performed in the morning. The music and dancing were never ending. Local said that the party will continue until the next day since it is a long weekend. Food booths were everywhere too, serving different types of local dishes. The BBQ Kip (chicken) is a must-try! Yeah, the smell was so inviting. 😛

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Some families arrive wearing a modern-type kotomisi with the same pattern

© Pancake Bunnykins

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