There has never been a better opportunity to check out the beauty of Chiswick Gardens than when it is illuminated by the dazzling Magical Lantern Festival. Having been nominated for awards at the Haymarket Event Awards such as Best Outdoor Event and Best game changer, the Magical Lantern Festival is now in its third year and is well known for being the alternative celebration choice for the Chinese New Year’s in London.
The Magical Lantern Festival was created as a fusion of art, heritage and culture, with specially designed bars, food stalls and attractions to keep you entertained for hours. The Chinese Lantern Festival is a 2000 year old tradition. The Han Dynasty (206 BC-AD 25) was the earliest recorded time at which the festival was of great importance. During the Festival, children would visit temples carrying paper lanterns, solving ancient riddles painted or drawn onto the lanterns. During the Tang Dynasty (618 AD), the tradition grew even more, lanterns were put up in the palace and along the streets. They were also used to build big festival lantern wheels, buildings and sometimes trees. The Lantern festival in London is a modern day reconstruction of these ancient wonders, using modern day technology to further develop the intricacies in art work and design of these amazing lanterns. The Magical Lantern Festival is also a celebration of the deep rooted Chinese culture in London, prevalent especially in the Chinatown area of Soho.
This year the theme of the magical Lantern Festival is Silk Road. This is the trail that opened up for trade routes between the East and the West and has been prevalent for centuries. The new theme therefore, plans to celebrate the various countries in which the trade route travels through.
Food and Drink
The Magical Lantern Festival offers a broad range of food choices. With many independently run stalls popping up during the festival’s course, you can be sure to indulge in a veritable feast whilst enjoying the lantern trail. On top of this you can also enjoy a drink at the Eis Haus Ice Bar. This is a tailor made bar made of over ten tons of Crystal Ice and serving a broad range of drinks and cocktails.
The nearest tube to Chiswick Gardens is Chiswick Train station. The festival is open from the 19th of January to the 26th of February and is open Thursday till Sunday every week.