Taiwan Lantern Festival
Earlier this year we had the opportunity to experience the festivities, art, and color of the Lantern Festival in Taiwan! They celebrate this every year on the 15th day of the first lunar month, so the date moves around depending on the lunar calendar. They also hold the festival in a different area every time, with this years being held in the southwest region of Chia Yi. This lantern festival is not to be confused with the sky lantern event in Pingxi, which happens in a similar timeframe.
One of the new things about the 2018 Chia Yi Lantern Festival were all the super modern lantern art sculptures. It took over 20,000 light bulbs and 2000 circuits to make the 6000+ lanterns! It was quite the spectacle! Funny thing - we had first thought the lantern festival was going to be the floating one like at Pingxi or Chiang Mai, but the plethora and variety of lighted lanterns here made up for that!
From a distance, the whole festival looked a bit like Burning Man with all the lights and colors!
This steel tree fitted with red and yellow lanterns was our favorite art structure!
A close second was this intricately carved wooden boat!
And here are some other fantastic lanterns at the festival!
The next day we headed northwest out of Chiayi to Xingang to observe the festive, cacophonous procession happening at the Xingang Fengtian Temple. This procession last eight days, in which they visit eighteen villages by foot. We happened to catch part of the procession at the temple - which involved a ridiculous amount of firecrackers, lots of performances from musicians, and lion dancers.
We were also supposed to head to Kaohsiung, but due to a schedule change we couldn’t make it.