The Hoi An Lantern Festival is a popular event in Vietnam and it is often one of the many things that brings tourists to the area. This traditional festival is held one night every month and it is always on the 14th day on the lunar calendar for that month. You may also hear the Hoi An Lantern Festival called by another name or two, and they are the Legendary Night and the Full Moon Party.
|Year||Month||Hoi An Lantern Festival Dates|
|2021||January||January 26th, 2021|
|2021||February||February 25th, 2021|
|2021||March||March 26th, 2021|
|2021||April||April 25th, 2021|
|2021||May||May 25th, 2021|
|2021||June||June 23rd, 2021|
|2021||July||July 23rd, 2021|
|2021||August||August 21st, 2021|
|2021||September||September 20th, 2021|
|2021||October||October 19th, 2021|
|2021||November||November 18th, 2021|
|2021||December||December 17th, 2021|
|2022||January||January 16th, 2022|
|2022||February||February 14th, 2022|
|2022||March||March 16th, 2022|
|2022||April||April 14th, 2022|
|2022||May||May 14th, 2022|
While the Hoi An Lantern Festival is popular amongst the locals, the tourists also love the festivities every time it is held. The entire festival is held in Hoi An Old Town, which means you will be safe from motorized vehicles until ten o’clock at night. Bikes are not even allowed on the streets of Old Town until the festival is over for the evening.
Most of the festivities are held at the Japanese Covered Bridge, Hoai River, and the Cau An Hoi Bridge. The main part of this festival is obviously the lanterns, but when you attend, you can also play many different games and listen to live music.
A couple of the games include chess and Bai Choi, which is bingo. You can also listen to the recitation of poems, folk songs of Quang Nam, and family music. Other fascinating things to do include learning how to do calligraphy, watching traditional martial arts, seeing a performance at a traditional Vietnamese Theater, and breaking terra cotta pots.
(Hoi An Lantern Festival)
The burning of paper and counterfeit notes are the ways where the locals honor their ancestors and you will find a fire to burn those things in front of every single shop. There will also be a table in front of these shops, and they will be full of different fruits like mangos and bananas.
You will have an opportunity to purchase your own lantern to set off during the festivities. You can place your own papers in your lanterns with the candle before you set it off down the river. Once the lanterns are all lit, the streets become magical, because the main lights go out and the only shining light is that from all the glowing lanterns.
(Hoi An Lantern Festival)
If you want to see the lanterns in a truly spectacular way, you may want to consider taking a sampan ride. If you are not aware, a sampan is a traditional canoe in Vietnam, and a guide will paddle you out into the water. You can set your lantern off from there, so it does not get lost in the sea of other lanterns. As soon as your lantern is in the water, you can easily take pictures of the thousands of other lanterns in the water and lining the streets.
(Hoi An Lantern Festival)
You will probably get hungry when you are attending the Hoi An Lantern Festival, but don’t worry, there will be plenty of street foods for you to purchase. The most popular dish during the festival is Cao Lau, but you can also order Banh Bao, Banh Vac, and Banh Dap.
Before you leave the Hoi An Lantern Festival, make sure you take a little time to explore the nearby temples. They all offer an all-inclusive admission price of 120,000 VND, so you can see all the temples and museums you want for this one low price. Many of the locals will be seen in groups at the Quan Cong Pagodas, where they will all be wishing for happiness and luck in the coming days.
The best time to attend the Hoi An Lantern Festival is during the month of February, because it is the first full moon of the lunar New Year. This means that that festival is the biggest and best out of all the festivals held throughout the year. Of course, you can visit Vietnam at any time to attend the festival, but many past visitors have said they have had the best time up through the month of August. After that, the rain usually begins to fall, and it is quite wet, cold, and windy for the festivals in the latter half of the year.
It is easy to reach the Hoi An Lantern Festival from where you are staying during your vacation in Vietnam, especially if you are in Hoi An. Most of the time, you can walk from your hotel room, but if you are further away, you can also take a taxi or bus down to Hoi An Old Town. It is important to note that if you do ride a bike down to the Hoi An Lantern Festival, you must park it outside of the festival area. This is for the safety of everyone attending the event.
The Hoi An Lantern Festival is a must-see event for everyone visiting Vietnam. If it is possible, you must plan your trip, so that you are in this part of Vietnam when this festival is taking place during any of the months throughout the year.
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