The Wangmantian fish-shaped lanterns are attracting widespread attention at the ongoing annual Yuyuan Garden Lantern Show in East China's Shanghai.
The Wangmantian fish-shaped lanterns debut in Yuyuan Garden, a major scenic spot in downtown Huangpu district, Shanghai, which has been holding lantern shows for 28 years. [Photo/ahnews.com.cn]
The lantern festival, which was included on China's list of national intangible cultural heritage in 2008, is a key event in the Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations.
It is a tradition in Chinese culture to admire lanterns and catch cultural performances during the Chinese New Year, which this year takes place on Jan 22.
Wangmantian is a village administered by Shexian county in Huangshan city, Anhui province. Fish-shaped lanterns in the village have a history stretching back over 600 years.
The Wangmantian Fish-Shaped Lantern Festival is the grandest event of the year in the village. Each family is said to be eager to contribute to the production of fish lanterns and to the staging of the festival.
Young people in traditional Chinese attire hold Wangmantian fish-shaped lanterns. [Photo/ahnews.com.cn]
The fish-shaped lanterns are made of bamboo and pasted over with colored paper. They come in different sizes and a large one can be as long as 7 meters and be 3 meters high. Moreover, to delight visitors, there are candles or electronic lights inside.
The fish-shaped lantern festival in Wangmantian village is one of the oldest and best-preserved traditional New Year customs in Huangshan city. It was listed as a provincial intangible cultural heritage in 2021.