I’ve heard about the Chinese Lantern Festival, but never been. Tonight Dad and I took the two boys along to Hagley Park to see for ourselves. We must be some of the last to go to the lantern festival as clearly most of Christchurch knew all about it and it was PACKED. We went at 7pm but it would have been better to go at 8pm.
The Chinese Lantern Festival is organised by the Asia New Zealand Foundation and there are lots of stalls showcasing Chinese culture from acupuncture to the Confucius Institute, and a fair few food stalls which had huge queues. There is a main stage with an entertainment programme running from 5pm-10pm tonight and tomorrow (Sunday 23 Feb). We saw the cutest kids performing some impressive martial arts, a drumming group, a lion dance and a dragon dance. The two dances were traditional Chinese dances with costumes and we thoroughly enjoyed watching them. The lanterns are lit (hence why it’s better to go later) and are hung in the branches of the trees, as well as on the ground, and some in the water.
If you’re in Christchurch or Auckland and fancy going along on Sunday here’s a link to Asia New Zealand Foundation which has all the info you need.
Here are some images of our night…