Vancouver's enchanting solstice lantern festival returns this month

Dec 8 2022, 5:30 pm

If the dark days are getting you down, then you can find some light in the dark at a lantern festival this December solstice.

According to the Secret Lantern Society website, the 29th Annual Winter Solstice Lantern Festival will happen on Wednesday, December 21.

The solstice is the darkest night of the year – after the solstice, the sun will start to make its return and the days will slowly start to get longer once again. Solstice celebrations date back to ancient times, more than 12,000 years ago, and the tradition continues today.

This year, like others, the lantern festival will take place in three different neighbourhoods simultaneously: Yaletown, Granville Island, and Strathcona.

It’s the perfect way to celebrate the season that’s not associated with Christmas or Santa Clause at all.

Both Yaletown and Granville Island will also have a mesmerizing labyrinth of light experiences. You can take a meditative walk through a maze of lanterns in a massive space filled with the honeyed scent of 600 glowing beeswax candles.


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A post shared by James Ong (@secretlanternsociety)


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A post shared by James Ong (@secretlanternsociety)

At Granville Island, the Secret Lantern Walk, a festive lantern procession, kicks off at 6:30.

If you want to learn how to make your own lantern, you can watch their how-to videos to prepare for the solstice.

Curious about the lantern labyrinths? You should get a timed entry ticket online in advance. They will also sell tickets, cash only, at the door, and there are two locations where you can try it  – at Performance Works on Granville Island and the Roundhouse Community Centre in Yaletown.

Winter Solstice Lantern Festival

When: Wednesday, December 21
Time: 6 pm to 10 pm
Where: Yaletown, Granville Island, and Strathcona
Tickets: Labyrinth of Light tickets online from $10

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