Taichung counts down to 2020 Taiwan Lantern Festival

2020-01-09
 
2020 Taiwan Lantern Festival is set to showcase Taichung’s cultural and natural landscapes via an assortment of thought-provoking installations Feb. 8-23 in the central Taiwan metropolis. (Courtesy of TCG)
2020 Taiwan Lantern Festival is set to showcase Taichung’s cultural and natural landscapes via an assortment of thought-provoking installations Feb. 8-23 in the central Taiwan metropolis. (Courtesy of TCG)
 
2020 Taiwan Lantern Festival kicks off Feb. 8 in Taichung, spotlighting the city’s cultural and natural landscapes via thought-provoking installations inspired by creative, high-tech and traditional elements.
 
The 16-day event—themed Fantastical Forest Land—is organized by the Tourism Bureau under the Ministry of Transportation and Communications in partnership with Taichung City Government. Situated on the site of the 2018 Taichung World Flora Exposition, the festival comprises five areas: Forest of Happy Mice, Island of Polar Day, Kingdom of Fantasies, Town of Traditional Crafts and Valley of Resonance.
 
According to the bureau, the main lantern is inspired by towering trees found in the local mountains. The 15-meter-tall interactive structure, complemented by a living forest and flowers, promotes closer relations between humankind and Mother Nature.
 
Equally impressive are the 120-meter-long entrance walls decorated with colorful images of Taichung’s signature tourism attractions and mice symbolizing the upcoming Year of the Rat in the Chinese zodiac. Designed by fashion artist Daniel Wong, the eye-catching visuals are heavily influenced by his renowned print graphic and street art styles, the bureau said.
 
Sideline attractions and promotions include nearby Wenxin Forest Park and giveaways of 3,000 minitree lanterns. The former, which opened last December, showcases lanterns modeled on the 12 signs of the zodiac and popular characters from the Japanese toy brand Shakurel Planet.
 
First staged 31 years ago in Taipei City, the annual festival has been held at a different location around Taiwan since 2001. This is Taichung’s third time hosting the event after 2015 and 2003.