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Lantern Festival

Taiwan Lantern Festival

The Tourism Bureau has been holding the Taiwan Lantern Festival for 22 years to attract visitors and raise the international profile of the cultural charms of Taiwan. Traditionally, the festival has been celebrated by carrying hand lanterns. The Taiwan Lantern Festival adds a high-tech to this traditional custom and brings the event to the international stage. From to the theme lantern displays to folk arts and performances, the festival has become a perennial favorite of locals and foreign visitors alike.

Taipei & Kaohsiung Lantern Festival

Colorful and lanterns of all sizes and shapes have always been main attractions of the Lantern Festival, which is celebrated with a grand national festival and major festival in Taipei and Kaohsiung.

The Taipei Lantern Festival is held for several days at the National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall, reaching its peak on the day of the Lantern Festival itself. There is a gigantic lantern depicting this year's Chinese zodiac animal, which is the centerpiece of the festival. There are also many traditional lanterns, electromechanical lantern displays, and large themed lantern floats designed by different companies.

The Kaohsiung Lantern Festival is held along the Love River. During the festival period, both sides of the river as well as Wufu Rd., Heping Rd., Guangzhou St., and other thoroughfares have lantern exhibitions. There are also musical performances helping to out the whole city is in a festive mood.

Pingxi(Pingsi) Sky Lantern Festival

The Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival is one of the most colorful activities of the Lantern Festival. Pingxi is a remote hillside town. In former times, those who worked or farmed in the mountains faced the risks of being robbed or killed; so the people used lanterns to tell their families they were safe. The lanterns have lost their function as a warning signal, and today they are a symbol of peace and good fortune.

Yenshui Fireworks Festival

The fireworks display put on by the God of War Temple in Yanshui, Tainan City is one of the more popular and much awaited events during the Lantern Festival.

The display starts one day before the Lantern Festival with the tour of the god's sedan chair, accompanied by the discharge of firecrackers. The noise, lights, and festivities that follow continue well into the following morning.

Bombing of Master Han Dan

The Lantern Festival is celebrated on the 15th day of the first lunar month of the Chinese calendar with a series of activities throughout Taiwan. Among the highlight events at this time is the inspection tour of the deity Master Han Dan in TaitungCity. As guardian of the celestial treasury, Han Dan is revered today as a god of wealth, but people believe that he was once a real person named Chao Kong-ming. When the god makes his annual inspection tour of the earthly world, crowds turn out to pray for his blessing and good fortune. On the day of the festival, Han Dan is also joined by other gods of the temples in various townships and Taitung on tours of the community. Households in these areas prepare offerings of fresh flowers and fruit and light strings of firecrackers to welcome the Han Dan. The person representing the god on the tour wears only a headscarf, mask and pair of red shorts. He stands courageously amidst the fusillade of firecrackers protected only by a tree branch. There are several stories as to why the people throw firecrackers at Han Dan. In one version, it is because Han Dan is the god of hooligans and his power grows with the loudness of the explosions. A less widely accepted explanation is that Han Dan is afraid of the cold, so the people throw firecrackers at the god during his tour to keep him warm and win his blessing.

* Data Source by Tourism BUREAU, 更多旅遊訊息在 *
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