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Canterbury prides itself as one of the most accessible regions in New Zealand. Home to the second largest city in the country, Christchurch, the region has everything you need for an authentic Kiwi experience.
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South Island Lantern Festival 22 - 24 February 2019
South Island Lantern Festival
Don’t miss one of Christchurch’s largest and most popular free events, in the Avon River Precinct – connecting with the Avon River, Worcester Boulevard, and Cathedral Square.
Bring along your family and friends to experience Chinese culture, with vibrantly coloured lanterns lighting up the central city. This event is for everyone and features music, performance, dance, food, and lanterns.
The Lantern Festival has traditionally been part of Chinese New Year celebrations since the Han Dynasty (206 BC-221AD). Usually held on the 15th day of the first month of the lunar calendar, it marks the end of New Year festivities.
It is said that the holiday goes back to an ancient Chinese belief that heavenly spirits could be seen flying about during the first full moon of the lunar calendar. People used lanterns to spot the spirits.
Nowadays lanterns come in all forms and shapes: animals, insects or flowers - a favourite subject is the zodiac animal of the year.