When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival

If spending a week in Thailand’s Chiang Mai with Paleo Nick, Steph from Stupid Easy Paleo and a bunch of other top notch types wasn’t enough, our Culinary Adventure┬ájust happened to coincide with the incredible Yi Peng Lantern Festival.

Full moon & lantern | When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival | lizniland.com

I’d heard of the festival before (mainly because of this video) but I was totally unprepared for how moving & downright bloody amazing it would be to participate in it.

Chiang Mai city lights | When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival | lizniland.com

My photographs of the event don’t do it justice at all and I’m actually happy about that: it really is something that needs to be experienced and felt, not just seen.

Lantern | When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival | lizniland.com

I loved being down near the river watching people prepare their lanterns for launching into the night sky. In the crowds, couples young and old, groups of travelling friends and local families alike gathered around to cast their intentions for the coming year & let their worries float away with their glowing paper tube.

Sea of lanterns | When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival | lizniland.com

The Buddhist lantern festival in Chiang Mai usually coincides with Loi Krathong, a festival which occurs throughout Thailand and involves the floating of colourful floral arrangements down the river. Combined, these events make Chiang Mai an incredibly vibrant place to be at this time of year!

Loi Krathong | When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival | lizniland.com

City lights | When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival | lizniland.com

Parades, fireworks (both official & otherwise!), parties, a beauty pageant and street markets galore are spread throughout the city making it impossible to hide from the joy of it all.

Street markets | When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival | lizniland.com

Street markets (black & white) | When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival | lizniland.com

If you ever have the opportunity to participate in the Yi Peng Lantern Festival, I highly recommend you make sure it happens. It is, without a doubt, one of the most incredible things I’ve ever experienced.

Fireworks off the bridge | When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival | lizniland.com

Girls with candles | When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival | lizniland.com

Fireworks off the bridge view | When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival | lizniland.com

Here’s a little video of us sending off our lantern. Unfortunately the couple trying to do likewise next to us don’t have quite as much success…

Have you ever experienced the Yi Peng Lantern Festival? Have you ever participated in anything that unexpectedly blew your mind or overwhelmed your senses?

One Thought on “When in Chiang Mai: Yi Peng Lantern Festival

  1. Pingback: Chiang Mai: Culinary Adventures | Liz Niland

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