Thursday, July 22, 2010

Full Moon Festival

At dusk, fairy lights and Chinese lanterns twinkled illuminating the pretty architecture of Hoi An. On each full moon, this former mercantile town turned tailor shop powerhouse throws a festival of lights. Boats glide through the silky black waters of the Thu Bon River journeying through floating candles that drift towards the sea. Visitors crowd dockside cafes soaking up the atmosphere while others crouch, chopsticks in hand, at plastic tables at the new night market near the Japanese Bridge.
Nearby, the wooden bridge to An Hoi Island thronged with excited children cupping candles in lotus-bud holders; on the other side the largest collection of Chinese lanterns for sale decked out a whole length of street. This miniature city of merchants’ houses with their low-slung rooves and Assembly halls, dark timbers, and decorative flourishes mixes with shops displaying silks, woodcrafts and paintings. At one shop on Nguyen Thai Hoc St residents have taken the town’s fashion fame one step further: two jack russells greeted visitors in custom-made coats. The canine models seemed to love the photographic attention.

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