Lantern festivals are a beautiful part of many different cultures, and each one has its own significance to its people. The Chinese lantern festival dates back thousands of years to the Han dynasty and is still practiced to this day, not only in China but also throughout the United States. The Chinese lantern festival is held each year on the 15th day of the first lunar month, marking the end of the Chinese spring festival.
Two of the most popular annual lantern festivals in America are the Floating Lantern Festival in Honolulu and the Rising Dreams Festival in Nevada. Each of these festivals hold their own special meaning, but they both bring people together and help them connect more with themselves, their loved ones and each other.
If you’ve always wanted to take in the breathtaking spectacle of hundreds or even thousands of lanterns illuminating the night sky, here are five reasons why you should make that dream a reality.
1. Celebrate Life
Lantern festivals can help you usher in a new chapter of your life and commemorate a fresh start. While some lantern festivals are specifically designed to celebrate the start of a new year, you can attend any lantern festival and have it signify something momentous to you.
It’s rare that so many people come together to set their dreams and wishes free; in the moment you watch the lanterns make their way across the water or drift into the sky, you’ll have a chance to step back and truly feel present in the moment. We can always use another reason to celebrate life and truly be at one with it.
2. Make an Important Wish
Maybe you’ve been holding onto the same dreams for years, too afraid to go after them. Or perhaps there’s a wish deep in your heart that you can’t realize on your own. A lantern festival is a wonderful way to bring your wish to life and set it free into the universe with only the most positive intentions.
With so many other people around you doing the same, there’s a magnetic, inspirational energy at lantern festivals that can restore hope and inspire you to go after everything you long for.
3. Create Powerful Memories
Whether it’s with friends, family or even just by yourself, a lantern festival is a special occasion that you’ll remember for years to come. It’s easy for life to become stale and routine after a while, and even your go-to activities like the movie theater or pizza night can start to feel repetitive.
If you want to mark a special occasion or surprise someone close to you, then a lantern festival is an amazing way to do it. If anyone in your family or social circle is into photography or Instagram, they’ll absolutely love the opportunity to take some shots of the lanterns as they make their way through the night.
4. Go on a Romantic Date
A lantern festival is a date night for the books. Maybe you’re waiting for the right moment to ask someone to be official, or you want to tell them something special for the first time. A lantern festival is an affordable, fun and super romantic date that will have anyone swooning.
To go all-out, consider making your date a candlelit dinner before you head over to the festival. You could make a traditional Chinese dish at home like vegetable dumplings or whip up one of their favorite meals from scratch.
5. Connect With a New Culture
If you attend a Chinese or Indian Diwali lantern festival, you’ll get to experience another culture’s beautiful traditions firsthand. In today’s politically charged society, it’s more important than ever that we break past our own comfort zones and familiarity and celebrate other cultures and countries.
You’ll get to meet new people, try new things and have a wonderful story to share with others after you attend your first lantern festival.