A lunar New Year festival with more than 15,000 lanterns is underway in Nagasaki, western Japan.
The Nagasaki Lantern Festival coincides with the Chinese New Year and symbolizes the city’s long history of exchanges with other countries.
A lighting ceremony was held in Minato Park to open the festival on Saturday evening.
The main display features a mythical Chinese bird, “Feng Huang,” and cranes along with mandarin ducks, which are believed to bring good luck.
It was named “Bai Niao,” or “100 birds,” to mark the beginning of the year of the rooster, according to the Oriental zodiac.
People who watched the ceremony for the first time say they were moved by its beauty and they are looking forward to seeing the other events.
The festival will run through February 11th.
A parade called the Maso Gyoretsu was held on Sunday. It depicts the crew of a Chinese ship who visited Nagasaki during the Edo Period. A statue of the god of safe navigation was carried to a temple in the city.
Source and image: NHK