China News Service, Taipei, February 24th. Title: Appreciating lanterns during the Lantern Festival and receiving the blessings of the "dragon"

  China News Service reporter Yang Chengchen

  Appreciating lanterns during the Yuan Dynasty is a traditional Chinese folk custom.

In Taiwan, during the Lantern Festival, lantern festivals and lantern fairs all over the country compete for beauty and show off their own characteristics.

In the Year of the Dragon, the fifteenth day of the first lunar month falls on a weekend, and the festive atmosphere reaches its climax on the last day of the New Year.

  In Nantou, the main lantern "Blessings Come from the East", which is more than 10 meters high, stands at the local lantern fair exhibition site. The lanterns around the main lantern are from Zhejiang.

“We reserve the best areas for mainland lanterns every year,” said Chen Zhixian, director of the Nantou County Government’s Tourism Department.

  This county and city in central Taiwan has set up a mainland lantern area at the Lantern Festival every year since 2014, and Zhejiang is a frequent visitor here. This year, a total of 12 large-scale lanterns participated in the exhibition, including Hangzhou's "Beautiful Three Rivers" and Ningbo's "Long Yao Ningbo". ", Wenzhou's "Millennium Commercial Port" and other themed lanterns.

At the "Nantou Lantern Festival" exhibition site, the lanterns surrounding the main lantern come from Zhejiang.

(Photo courtesy of the organizer)

  A few years ago, the "Taishun Corridor Bridge" lanterns donated and built by Wenzhou "settled" in Jiji Town, Nantou; after this year's lantern festival, Wenzhou's characteristic lanterns that impressed the audience will also "settle" in Jiji.

  The Taipei Lantern Festival, which has also included mainland elements in recent years, has become even more lively because the TV series "Flowers" has attracted attention on the island.

This year is the ninth consecutive year that Shanghai has participated in the Taipei Lantern Festival by sending lights in response.

  The light area with the theme of "VISIT SHANGHAI" has attracted an influx of tourists since the 17th.

The central headlights display urban landmarks such as the Peace Hotel and the Oriental Pearl Tower, which to a certain extent satisfy the imagination of Taiwanese audiences who are fans of popular dramas about Shanghai-style culture.

According to reports, from the theme design of "VISIT SHANGHAI" to the cartoon images set up at the illuminated reception area, they are all inviting Taiwanese friends to visit Shanghai.

On the evening of February 17, “Shanghai Lanterns” appeared in Taipei.

Photo by China News Service reporter Yang Chengchen

  "Who said the Lantern Festival can only be about lantern viewing? Have you ever tried wearing Hanfu?" This is the invitation sent to the public by this year's Taoyuan Lantern Festival.

The Taoyuan Lantern Festival Lantern Exhibition, which combines the culture of praying in underground temples and ancient Hanfu culture, is particularly grand.

  The Hanfu performance from mainland "recommendation officers" echoes Taiwanese folk belief elements. Citizens can not only admire lanterns and guess lantern riddles, but also participate in experiential interactions such as Hanfu parades and Hanfu weddings.

In recent years, mainland costume idol dramas have become popular in Taiwan, with horse-faced skirts and flying fish costumes gaining favor among young audiences.

Young people not only like Hanfu of different styles and dynasties, but are also infected by the ancient details.

  "In the past, most of the visitors to the lantern festival were middle-aged and elderly people. In recent years, more and more young people have come to experience the lantern festival," said a Nantou County official.

  As counties and cities across Taiwan attach great importance to the Lantern Festival, the funds invested in the Lantern Festival have increased in recent years, and the traditional lantern festival has also become more modern with the addition of technological elements.

The "2024 Taiwan Lantern Festival" was lit up in Tainan on the evening of the 24th. The main lantern was named "Dragon Comes to Taiwan" and was 18 meters high and 22 meters long.

According to reports, the lamp was created using solar packaging material technology.

During the Lunar New Year, the 2024 "Taipei Lantern Festival" with the theme of "Long Yue Light City" was launched in Taipei West District.

A total of 123 lights were installed this time, and the "Dragon Stage" located in Ximending attracted a large number of people to stop and take photos.

Photo by China News Service reporter Yang Chengchen

  The Year of the Dragon has a special auspicious meaning for the Chinese people. In addition, the pronunciation of "dragon" is similar to that of "Luan" (meaning "all" and "du") in Hokkien. Therefore, there are many auspicious words about "dragon" in Taiwan.

During the Spring Festival of the Year of the Dragon in Jiachen, you can see "dragon" lanterns everywhere. Some of them are majestic and impressive, while others are small, exquisite and cute.

People enjoy the lanterns and have fun, receive exclusive blessings inherited from traditional Chinese culture, and feel warm and peaceful.