February 16, 2018 3:28 PM EST

From Mexico City to Tokyo, vibrant celebrations kicked off to celebrate the Chinese New Year.

The Year of the Dog is officially here, and Friday marks the start of celebrations for the Chinese New Year, which are set to continue this weekend. This year, the Chinese New Year, which is also sometimes referred to as the Lunar New Year, began on Friday, Feb. 16 and lasts through Sunday, Feb. 18.

The festival is centuries old, celebrating the new year according to Chinese calendar. Each year is associated with a different animal, and 2018 is the Year of the Dog. The dog is one of 12 animals associated with the Chinese New Year and is signifies loyalty.

Most Chinese New Year celebrations involve firework displays, family feasts, visiting temples, and paying respects to one’s ancestors. It’s also a chance for people to prepare for good fortune in the upcoming year.

Chinese New Year celebrations have already begun in many cities ranging from New York City to Beijing to Sydney. In Vietnam, throngs of people lined the streets of Hanoi’s Old Quarter Friday to watch the fireworks in honor of the Chinese New Year. And in Sichuan, China, a large crowd took part in a traditional dragon dance, where a group of dancers emulate the mythical beast’s movements.

See photos from Lunar New Year celebrations all over the world above.

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Write to Kara Milstein at kara.milstein@time.com.

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