TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – In Seoul, South Korea, the annual Lantern Festival began on Nov. 2, and will run through Nov. 18 with lantern displays along the Cheonggyecheon Plaza in the center of the city. The theme of this year’s festival is “Seoul Dream, Flowering Light.”
In a show of friendship, the organizers this year invited the Taiwan Tourism Bureau to join the Seoul Lantern Festival, and Taiwan has provided a lantern representing the country as a part of this year’s festival.
Following its appearance at Taiwan’s 2018 Lantern Festival in Chiayi City, the lantern design, which depicts a ringed pheasant against a rising sun, is being displayed as part of the Seoul Lantern Festival.
To launch the annual event, now in its tenth year, the mayor of Seoul, Park Won-soon, along with Taiwan’s envoy to South Korea, Tang Diann-wen (唐殿文) joined the lighting ceremony.
Speaking at the ceremony, Tang said that he was very happy that Taiwan could showcase the lantern this year at the festival, which would showcase the beauty of Taiwan’s culture to people in Korea.
He remarked that exchanges between Korea and Taiwan will continue to increase, and he extended a warm welcome to Korean travelers to visit Taiwan in the future, reports CNA.
The Tourism Bureau’s chief of the Seoul Office Huang Yi-ping (黃怡平) invited Korean friends to visit the 2019 Taiwan Lantern Festival, being held in Pingtung next year.
Nearby the pheasant lantern, the Taiwan Tourism Bureau has a small booth, where visitors can receive tourist information about Taiwan.
Visitors can also reportedly download a map of tourist attractions in Taiwan. Those who do will receive a small gift from the Taiwan Tourism Bureau, reports CNA.
According to statistics, in 2017 there were 1,943,234 people from Taiwan and Korea who traveled to each other’s country. From January through September 2018, that number had already reached 1,540,000, representing an increase of 8.98 percent over the same period last year.
The Taiwan Tourism Bureau hopes to surpass the two million mark for reciprocal visits in 2018.