Date: January 15, 2016
The annual sky lantern festival in New Taipei City’s Pingxi District is No. 3
on National Geographic magazine’s list of 10 best winter trips worldwide for 2016.
Staged at the first full moon of the Lunar New Year, the event attracts thousands to the mountainous region in northern Taiwan. An estimated 100,000 to 200,000 of the orange glowing rice paper lanterns carrying written blessings and wishes are released into the night sky.
The other trips making up the list are, in ascending order, Vilnius, Lithuania; San Juan, Puerto Rico; Hluluwe-Umfolozi Park, South Africa; Dublin, Ireland; Al Ain, Abu Dhabi; Santa Barbara, the U.S.; Merida, Mexico; Chiloe Island, Chile; and Rarotonga, Cook Islands.
Launched in 1999, Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival has been gaining fame in the global tourism sector on the strength of its combined aspects of tradition and cultural creativity, according to NTC Government’s Tourism and Travel Department.
“Hailed by Discovery Channel as the second largest carnival in the world, the event has garnered accolades over the years, including selection as one of the 52 things to do in 2013 by CNN Travel and one of the world’s 14 must-see festivals by travel guide publisher Fodor’s,” a department official said. [FULL STORY]