Lantern Festival 2023, Taipei (元宵節)
The Lantern Festival is a traditional festival that marks the last (that is, the 15th) day of Lunar New Year. Starting at small origins, with families building their own lanterns for children to carry around, it now takes more… established forms.
One such form is the Taiwan Lantern Festival (臺灣燈會), organized yearly by the Tourism Bureau – a big festival at differing locations with comprehensive artworks and light shows. 2023, the festival was organized in Taipei, mostly around the Taipei 101 (臺北101), at National Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall (國立國父紀念館) and in Songshan Cultural and Creative Park (松山文創園區).
In the weeks before the festival, first small and then ever bigger lanterns and artworks appeared throughout the area. The festival itself started at dusk, transforming the busy area into a mesmerizing (and still busy) fantasy landscape. For me, only the festival music was missing…
You can find more photos on Lunar New Year here. Michelle Kuo and Albert Wu also wrote a fascinating article on the historical origins of the lantern festival in Taiwan and the cultural forms it now takes. Head over to their blog to find out more.