Hundreds of thousands lanterns rise up without the intention of ever coming down. Each lantern fading smaller and smaller by the second.
Lighting sky lanterns has been in Asian culture as early as the 3rd century BCE. Lanterns originally were used in war, to summon help when surrounded by enemy troops. Nowadays, around Chinese New Year (around the second week of February) people gather and scribble prayers, hopes, and dreams on the lanterns to release into the night sky. Lantern festivals are popping up all over the world, see which ones you have to visit!
Spreading Light in the Mojave Desert
Just 25 miles outside of Las Vegas, Nevada lies barren land perfect for lighting lanterns. Relatively new festival, RISE is now onto its third year attracting thousands of free spirits to the desert to light lanterns in unison. RISE is about bringing friends, family, and strangers together to celebrate life.
Dates: October 5, 6, 2018
Going Back To It’s Origins
An hour East of Taipei lies Pingxi, a small district known for lighting lanterns. During Chinese Near Year, thousands of people flock to the Pingxi train tracks to light sky lanterns to release into the air. Rated as one of the best festivals in the world, it attracts locals and foreigners alike. Originally, the reason of lighting the lanterns were to let others know that the town was safe. The lanterns were decorated with wishes and images relating to its owner. Now, its a famous tourist destination, where year round you can go light lanterns. However, don’t miss the main festival; check back for new dates for the new Chinese New Year!
Dates: March 2, 2018 (check back each year for new date)
The Original “Lantern Festival”
Thailand’s Loi Krathrong and Yi Peng Festival, also called, the festival of lights, is a must see for anyone in Chiang Mai around mid November. People celebrate Loi Krathrong by floating candles down the river in baskets made of banana leaves and wood. This is an ancient ritual to pay respects to the water spirits. Simultaneously, Yi Peng festival, is where numerous sky lanterns are released into the sky. The festivals take place around late November every year and lasts three days.
Dates: November 21, 22, 23, 2018
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