Splash of colour for Korean festival

The transformation at Seoul's Jogyesa Temple has started as it prepares for Buddha's birthday.

One of South Korea's key Buddhist temples, it will be decorated with lanterns in time for the special day on May 12.

The lanterns are in the shape of the lotus flower, which has a special significance in the Buddhist faith.

Buddha's birthday has been celebrated in Korea for more than 1,200 years. To welcome the auspicious day, the South Korean capital will also be hosting the Yeon Deung Hoe, or the Lotus Lantern Festival.

The festival, which will run from May 3 to 5, will feature more than 100,000 parade lanterns and floating lanterns making their way through the streets of Seoul.

Although the festival has its roots in religion, it has since become a cultural event celebrated by all in South Korea, and attracts more than 350,000 visitors.

Buddha's birthday is also a public holiday in South Korea.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 17, 2019, with the headline 'Splash of colour for Korean festival'. Print Edition | Subscribe