Montréal's Botanical Gardens are transformed with lanterns this autumn in preparation for the Garden of Light, previously known as the Magic of Lanterns or La Magie des Lanternes.
The days may be getting shorter, but the Gardens of Light exhibition is determined to bring a little light to those long autumn nights.
Gardens of Light mirrors traditions from Imperial China and the Lantern Festival which takes place every year. Chinese roots are clear in the festival, with 2016 seeing 'The Son of Heaven' theme enter the gardens, linking to the Chinese Emperor's life and taking a look at Beijing's Forbidden City.
The Chinese gardens aren't the only ones being shown some love during the exhibition. The Japanese Gardens are also awash with colour during the event but it is only the Chinese Garden that features authentically Chinese lanterns. The lanterns are constructed in Shanghai (Montréal's sister city) before being shipped to Canada to be built. This process takes around two months, as there can be anything up to around 1000 lanterns to assemble and put into place. Not all the lanterns are new every year, and the last time they had a full-blown revamp was back in 2012, in celebration of the event's 20th anniversary.
Attractions run during the event, from shadow puppetry shows to guided tours of the lanterns and gardens.
If you're looking to get the best out of your visit to the gardens, we recommend booking your tickets online and getting to the gardens either before 7 p.m. or after 8 p.m., particularly on weekends as they tend to get pretty busy. It also tends to be busier in the last week of the festival so avoid visiting then if possible. The gardens are open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
Inject some light back into those early evenings with Montréal's Gardens of Light. You'd be crazy to leave yourself in the dark.
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*We do our very best to verify the dates of our events but please check with the official event provider before booking your flights. We would hate for you to be disappointed!