Visitorship for lantern festival in city grows
The five-day lantern show which started on Feb 10 at Shanghai's Yu Garden was again a big hit with locals and tourists this year, drawing more than 140,000 visitors by the night of the Lantern Festival on Feb 11.
According to the organizers, visitor numbers had peaked at about 25,000 at 8 pm on Feb 11. To ensure the safety of visitors, local police dispatched more than 1,300 policemen to the vicinity.
One of the highlights of the show was the 9-meter-tall rooster lantern which was covered with 2,017 pieces of colorful feathers. Lantern installations depicting traditional Chinese culture such as the four great inventions of ancient China were also highly popular.
Organizers said that the lanterns displayed this year were brighter than before because of the adoption of LED and new energy technologies. They added that the energy consumption was 30 percent less than previous years.
According to China's largest online travel agency Ctrip, short-distance domestic trips to attractions such as scenic gardens and lantern shows are especially popular among tourists after the seven-day Spring Festival holiday.
Ctrip also found that the number of lantern shows has been on the rise nationwide in recent years. The scale of these shows have also been growing each year. Among the many cities in China that hold lantern shows, Shanghai has been rated the top destination among tourists.
The travel agency discovered that about 40 percent of the visitors to the Yu Garden lantern show were local residents. Tourists from the neighboring Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces made up 37 percent of the visitors, among which people from the cities of Hangzhou and Wuxi accounted for the majority 12 percent. Statistics also show that 10 percent of the tourists had traveled up to 800 kilometers to attend the lantern show.