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Visiting the Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival (1/2)

Visiting the Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival (1/2)

September 2018 · 3 min read · Taiwan

The Pingxi sky lantern festival is Taiwan's most popular festival. It is held every year at Chinese New Year, but since I will only be in Taiwan until mid-January, I had already accepted that I will be unable to see it.

1/125s; 20mm; f/2.5; ISO 1250

Yesterday was a public holiday in Taiwan: Mid-autumn festival, which is celebrated by the Taiwanese by having barbecues with their family and eating moon cakes. But when I was searching Google yesterday morning for where to go later that day to celebrate mid-autumn festival, I came across a Google news result of an article reporting that the local government is asking people to use public transport to get to the Pingxi sky lantern festival. I was confused since thought that Pingxi sky lantern festival was held only at Chinese New Year, but when I read the article, I found out that they recently changed it and it is now also held at mid-autumn festival!

1/100s; 26mm; f/1.8; ISO 280

Yesterday, when I found out about the Pingxi sky lantern festival, I was travelling with friends in Taichung, where I had met up with @livinguktaiwan two days before. We left Taichung earlier than originally planned and managed to arrive in Pingxi just in time for the launch of the first sky lanterns, but it was too late for us to register for launching our own lantern. During the festival, lanterns were launched by other visitors who had arrived in time to register. Under the assistance of volunteers, they unfolded the lanterns, inscribed them with wishes and launched them into the sky. There were several types if lanterns:

1/60s; 35mm; f/1.8; ISO 360

1/60s; 35mm; f/2.5; ISO 450

1/60s; 35mm; f/1.8; ISO 320

As usual, the Taiwanese tourism board had done a terrible job in promoting the new date of the festival to non-Chinese-speakers, but the positive side of that was that the festival grounds were not even half-full and much less crowded than the festival is at Chinese New Year! In fact, there were only few rows of people watching behind the launching area:

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1/100s; 18mm; f/2.2; ISO 100

After the first lanterns were launched successfully, things took a twist... Be sure to read the second part of my visit to the Pingxi sky lantern festival!

1/250s; 18mm; f/3.2; ISO 1600

Camera Gear

I captured these photos with my Nikon D5500* and a 18.0-35.0 mm f/1.8 lens.

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