The Buddha’s Birthday: Lantern Parade and Street Fair

The Buddha’s Birthday is almost here, (Monday, May 28th this year). This means that the Lantern Parade in Seoul will be this Saturday, and with the street fair on Sunday.

The lantern parade will begin around dusk, and will start at Dongguk University’s stadium, and head north to Dongdae-mun gate, and from there along Jong-no to Jogye temple. The lanterns are amazing, so don’t miss it if this is your first time. (I’m terrible at night-time photography, so all I have in the way of photos are colorful blurs!)

The street fair will take up the entire street in front of Jogye temple, and will start at 10-ish on Sunday morning. For an entire block, the road will be filled with activities and booths set up by Buddhist organizations and NGO’s from around the world. I can’t imagine any other place in the world where one could see so many different types of Buddhism and Buddhist organizations. Here are some photos from last year.  (You can see larger images of most photos by clicking on the image.)   For a great collection of night-time photos of Jogye Temple check out Robert’s photo blog.

Booths of the street fair stretching for a city block
you could hear these drums a block away
Farmer’s band: one of the great things about the day are incredible traditional music groups
a booth for making miniature lotus lanterns (like the ones in the top of the photo)


There was all kinds of interesting stuff for sale as well, here some incense holders
Incense being sold by Korea’s premier incense company, Neung In. They also provided the raw ingredients and showed people how to make their own incense.

One of the cool things about the street fair are the activities, here passersby participate in making a Buddhist painting
At Jogye Temple


Under the lanterns in Jogye Temple
Bathing the infant Buddha
“Between Heaven and Earth, there is nothing that is not this precious Self”


1 thought on “The Buddha’s Birthday: Lantern Parade and Street Fair”

  1. I remember going to this several times in 2008, 2009, 2010,2011…
    I see images and want to be there. But must remember I am here and memories are treasure thing.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s