Thailand: Chiang Mai – Loi Krathong Lantern Release
Every year, thousands of large paper lanterns are release into the air during the annual Loi Krathong/Yee Peng Festical of Lights celebration. This was a total “wow” event and most certainly goes down in the top-10 of festivals I’ve seen. Over 5000 people lighting the giant paper lanterns and release them slowly to float up into the sky, lit up by the full moon, search lights, and fireworks! A mesmerizing experience to watch the lanterns slowly drift and rise into the sky as if the whole scene is being recorded in slow motion. One thing is to have seen in on TV, and totally another is being literally in the middle and underneath it all. Some people clumsily burned their lanterns to the ground and one burning lantern didn’t get heated enough and actually landed on some girl’s head… Chiang Mai closes the airport for any flights during the evening lantern release times as the lanterns are considered a clear air traffic hazard. Spectacular nonetheless!