Paper Lanterns Mark End to Lunar New Year Festivities

Want to see more photos from lantern festivals throughout Asia? Browse the #lanternfestival hashtag, and the Fulfillment Amphitheatre (圓滿戶外劇場), Taipei Lantern Festival (台北燈節) and Minato Park (湊公園) location pages.

On the 15th day of the lunar new year, countries throughout Asia mark the end of lunar new year festivities by lighting elaborate paper lanterns. The Lantern Festival is variously known as Shangyuan or Yuanxiao (China), Chap Goh Meh (Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore), Tết Thượng Nguyên (Vietnam) and Koshōgatsu (Japan).

These festivals mark the first full moon of the lunar new year, and while their exact origin is unknown, releasing lanterns typically symbolizes letting go of the past and embracing the new year. The day also serves to build community and goodwill within and between families.