Going Bananas for Monkeys – The Taichung Lantern Festival

Main Monkey Lantern [1] - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Main Monkey Lantern [1] – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Guard Monkey - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Guard Monkey – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Monkey and Balloons - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Monkey and Balloons – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park

On Sunday, February 28th, my husband and I headed to the Taichung Lantern Festival happening in Taichung Park. Like I said in a previous post, this was not my first choice. However, for this year, it would have to suffice.

We arrived around dusk and we greeted with traffic jams everywhere as people frantically searched for parking in all directions. After driving around the park once with no luck, my husband dropped me off and sped off to find a parking spot further away.

It seemed like I had arrived at the perfect time because, while everyone was searching for parking, there were less people in the actual park which made viewing the lanterns a little more enjoyable.

Bridge and Lights - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Bridge and Lights – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Monkey on a Horse - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Monkey on a Horse – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Musical Monkey - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Musical Monkey – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Tree at Dusk in Taichung [One of my favorite pictures taken at the lantern festival and it wasn't even of a lantern.]
Tree at Dusk in Taichung [One of my favorite pictures taken at the lantern festival and it wasn’t even of a lantern.]

The first thing that caught my attention as I entered the park wasn’t a lantern, but rather a tree with the beautiful sky at dusk in the background. It was a magnificent sight and I just had to photograph it before continuing.

I took my time and slowly made my way around the lake, stopping to photograph the several Paul Frank monkey lanterns that were scatter around the park. Some were located in the pond and many seemed to take advantage of the rowboat rental option to get up, close, and personal with the lanterns positioned in the water. The boats added an extra element to photograph.

Rowing Monkey - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Rowing Monkey – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Scuba Monkey - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Scuba Monkey – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Paul Frank Monkey was the theme of the lanterns - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Paul Frank Monkey was the theme of the lanterns – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Monkey and Dolphin - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Monkey and Dolphin – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park

As I passed the rows of little lanterns, I saw several photographers with their cameras ready to record the water fountain show which took place less than a minute later. Talk about perfect timing.

By then, the crowds started to descend onto the park and as I snapped the last few pictures of the lanterns, I felt pretty pathetic trying to squeeze through the crowd to get a shot – and I took it as a cue that it was nearly time to leave.

]Oh, and to the annoying woman who stood in front of a few of the lanterns for ages while doing her long series of poses and then, continued to stand there while scolding her husband for taking awful photos, there were more people in the park than you that day.]

At that point, my husband showed up, just as I was finished looking at everything. We did one more walk around the park before taking in the main lantern show and heading back to the car.

Lanterns Galore - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Lanterns Galore – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Hearts and Lanterns [from another angle] - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Hearts and Lanterns [from another angle] – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Fountain Show - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Fountain Show – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Reflections [love this one as well] - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Reflections [love this one as well] – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Monkey and Horses - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Monkey and Horses – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Happy Year of the 'Monkey' - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Happy Year of the ‘Monkey’ – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Hearts [ another one of my favorite pictures] - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Hearts [ another one of my favorite pictures] – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Banana Monkey - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Banana Monkey – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park

 

Was it worth it? For me, it was because I got to see the lanterns without contending with the crowd. Plus, I am one stubborn individual who just had to get her dose of lanterns. But next year, I will not settle.

The Taichung Lantern Festival is now unfortunately over. For those of you living in this area, I wish I could have visited and shared this with you in a more timely manner.

However, if you are really adamant about attending a lantern festival, then I suggest you head to the Taiwan Lantern Festival which is happening in Taoyuan this year. It is huge and amazing and always exceeds my expectations. And if you need more convincing, then check out this post.

Have you ever attended a lantern festival or a similar festival? Tell me about it in the comment box below.

Main Monkey Lantern [2] - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Main Monkey Lantern [2] – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Main Monkey Lantern [4] - Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park
Main Monkey Lantern [4] – Taichung Lantern Festival at Taichung Park

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20 thoughts on “Going Bananas for Monkeys – The Taichung Lantern Festival

  1. This festival is awesome, and I am so glad you went to this one though it was not your first choice!!! As you know, I love monkeys and I wish I was at the festival 😀 Wonderful shots, very well done in low light and great close-ups. There certainly looked like there were a lot of Paul Frank laterns, and my impression of it was there was quite a lot to see. My favourite image would have to be the one of the monkey bursting out of the banana 😀 Once again, very well done ❤

    1. Thanks so much, Mabel!! Some photos were hard to capture as there were so many people there and a random person would sometimes walk right in front of the camera, just as you pressed the button.

      Yes, I know you have a love for monkeys and I am sure you would have captured some amazing shots of the lanterns, with Mr. Wobbles being the star of the show, of course. 😉 I am sure that the year of the monkey will be extra special for you because you got all of that monkey karma on your side! 🙂 😉

      1. It must have been annoying for random people to walk into shots. Happens to me all the time. What can you do but do a take two 🙂

        “all of that monkey karma on your side” I don’t know. This year has been very challenging for me so far. We will see. I am sure Mr Wobbles will bring good karma to my side at some point 🙂

  2. I like the red lanterns the best. The monkeys are cute, but they remind me of Las Vegas or the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in the US. Give me the traditional lanterns reflected int he water any day!

    And, yeah, entitled people taking photos are SUPER annoying.

  3. Did Paul Frank pay for the promotional displays, or did he get them for free? 😛

    I also came across some annoying people taking pictures with the lanterns. HELLO, if you want your face to be visible the lantern is going to be all white, and if you want the lantern to be visible then your face is going to be all black. What is the point of posing in front of the lanterns??

    1. It is funny you should say that because someone asked me on twitter if they had permission to use the Paul Frank monkey because of copyright laws. I honestly don’t know if they paid or vice versa – I just took photos!

      Yes, some people are ridiculous. I am sure ‘na na na’ [reference to your latest post] went through my mind several times as I was forced to wait.

  4. The pictures look so great! Lantern festival is the next occasion on my list after Chinese New Year 😀
    It must be a great sight with so many lights around the area, similar to the roses in HK for Valentine’s Day.
    I am just a little unhappy with all the Paul Frank monkeys around everywhere. There were too many of them in HK too.

    1. Thanks, Betty! This lantern festival had a Paul Frank monkey theme, but the others in Taiwan were way cooler and had a bigger variation. I understand where you are coming from with so many of the same monkey.

      I read your post about the LED roses and they looked so beautiful, so romantic!! Very different vibe that this!

  5. Gorgeous pictures 🙂 Hmm, I loosely celebrated Chinese Lantern Festival more than ten years ago at a local community college where there were lanterns and riddles and my first attempt at trying out dumplings with soy sauce. (In Russia I always eat dumplings with butter and sour cream which kind of weirds my father’s baby out, although when he tried it, he sort of liked it.) I enjoyed the festival a lot, although I learned that many Southern Chinese (where he’s from, Hong Kong) don’t celebrate Lantern festival 😦

    1. That is interesting that you eat dumplings with butter and sour cream. I have never tried it before, but I can see how it could be pretty delicious.

      The Taiwan Lantern Festival is the huge one here in Taiwan. It would take you several hours to see everything. If you ever have a chance, maybe you can check it out some year.

  6. Yeah, I have to admit I’m not a big fan of monkeys or Paul Frank. But I would imagine it was beautiful to walk around in. I do like how Asia does put on a nice lantern + park display 🙂

    1. I am not sure what they were thinking when they came up with some of these displays. And I have to agree that your imagination could run wild with the banana one – funny, because it also seemed to be one of the popular ones! 😉

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