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Buddha's birthday lantern parade to light up Seoul

By Yonhap

Published : May 11, 2024 - 11:33

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An exhibition on the traditional lantern festival is displayed at Open Songhyeon Green Square in Jongno-gu, Seoul, on May 2. (Yonhap) An exhibition on the traditional lantern festival is displayed at Open Songhyeon Green Square in Jongno-gu, Seoul, on May 2. (Yonhap)

A lantern parade marking the upcoming Buddha's birthday will take place in Seoul on Saturday, drawing an expected 50,000 people and leading to road closures.

The parade and related festivities are scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, before Buddha's birthday that falls on Wednesday, according to a Buddhist committee preserving the lotus lantern festival.

A procession of lantern holders will leave Dongdaemun gate at 7 p.m. Saturday and walk across the Jonggak intersection before reaching Jogye Temple, the chief temple of the Jogye Order.

Around 50,000 people are expected to take part in the parade, including Buddhists from across the country and immigrants from Vietnam, Bangladesh, Nepal and other nations.

The lanterns will have various shapes of baby Buddha sculptures, lions, elephants, lotus flowers, dragons and phoenixes and light up the streets of Seoul at night.

At 7:30 p.m., a concert will be held in front of Bosingak Pavilion, featuring acts such as b-boy team Show Design Group, fusion band NiNE ROCKER'z CLUB, and rock duo Norazo.

On Sunday, another concert will be held near Jogye Temple at 8:45 p.m., with comedian Yoon Seong-ho DJing music mixing Buddhist elements with a fast beat.

Sections of major roads will be closed on both days to ensure the smooth running of events.

The section from Dongdaemun to the Jonggak intersection will be completely closed off from 1 p.m. Saturday until 3 a.m. Sunday.

The road leading from Anguk intersection to Jonggak intersection will also be closed Sunday from 9 a.m. until midnight. (Yonhap)