The Seoul Lantern Festival will be extended to Nov. 21, a week longer than its original wrap up date of Nov. 14, Seoul City said.
“We’ve extended the lantern festival to Nov. 21 because we want to provide tourists here with more things to see and enjoy and also give Korean high-school students here the chance to relieve their stress and hope for successful college entrance exams, which are scheduled for Nov. 18,” said Ahn Seung-il, an official in the city’s culture and tourism planning division.
The 2010 Seoul Lantern Festival taking place in the Cheonggyecheon (Stream) area in the city center attracted an estimated 500,000 people on its first weekend, alone. The city launched the event on Nov. 5 with a lighting ceremony and a concert.
As of Nov. 11, the seventh day of the festival, the number of visitors had hit 1 million, Seoul City said. The dazzling and colorful lanterns gracing the heart of downtown Seoul were donated by the 24 participating countries, which include Japan, China, New Zealand and Taiwan. The site has been a magnet to photo aficionados, including amateur photographers, Seoul City said.
The lantern festival has been all the rage as it coincided with the G20 summit in Seoul. It thus features a lantern wishing for a successful global summit and another one for world harmony.