Ha Noi lights up as mid-autumn festival arrives
Update: Sep 29, 2017
Colourful lanterns will light up Thang Long Imperial Citadel and the gates will open for the public to celebrate mid-autumn festival, beginning now and running until October 4 - the full moon day of the eighth lunar month.

A corner of mid-autumn in Thang Long Imperial Citadel

The festival, organised for children by the Thang Long-Ha Noi Heritage Conservation Centre, offers a variety of activities. In particular, an education programme will help children better understand mid-autumn festivals of the early 20th century through documented works of the French researcher Henri Oger and photographer Albert Kahn.

Children will also have a chance to talk directly to historical and cultural researchers and artisans as well as experience traditional games and craft-making processes.

The space is filled with stalls displaying traditional toys associated with mid-autumn festivals.

Participating artisans include well-known makers of moon cakes, masks, lanterns, pottery, and to he (glutinous rice figurines). The skilled craft persons are coming from across Ha Noi as well as Bac Ninh Province.

“Toys and lanterns are an integral part of the mid-autumn festival parade. To the sounds of the drumbeat, children hold colourful lanterns and march on roads, and that’s the most interesting part of the mid-autumn festival celebration,” said Vu Van Sinh, a lantern-making artisan from Thanh Oai district, Hanoi.

“There are various kinds of lanterns, star or rabbit shaped. Most of them are not easy to make. We’re happy to be here to instruct the children to make lanterns for themselves.”

Traditional games will be played, such as carrying rice across a bamboo bridge, see-saw, boomerang, wooden horse, jumping-in-sack race, tug of war, stick-and-ball, clay crackers, board games and blindfolded drummer.

Organising the mid-autumn festival is part of a series of activities at the Thang Long-Ha Noi Heritage Conservation Centre designed to promote the intangible cultural heritage of the country, said Tran Viet Anh, director of the centre.

“We want to bring children attractive activities to celebrate the festival and through it, we expect them to uphold the traditions of the nation,” Anh said.

The festival is open everyday at Thang Long Imperial Citadel, 19 Hoang Dieu Street, Ba Dinh District, Ha Noi.