I got excited when I peeked at the glass walls of the mall and saw that the giant lanterns San Fernando were already lighted that I quickened my pace to the parking lot where a sizable number of people were already gathered. Finally, after several years, I’ve visited the famous giant lanterns of San Fernando, Pampanga!
The Giant Lantern Festival San Fernando is a yearly event in San Fernando, Pampanga. What started as a religious activity at the start of the 20th century and progressed to electrified lanterns when electricity was introduced in the city in 1934. From individual effort, it has transpired to a communal activity that today, instead of papel de hapon, bamboo frames and manual switches, the different barangays have one that is made from colored plastic or glass, metal frames and computer controlled switches to the tune of Christmas carols mixed with popular tunes.
But one really has to see these beautiful Christmas symbols that have made the City of San Fernando as the Christmas Capital of the Philippines, heck, it even has a Paskuhan Village (Christmas Village) several years before. Looking at the beautiful colors and the dancing lights can be mesmerizing. And to the tune of music?
The Giant Lantern Festival of San Fernando is still ongoing till 3 January. Check the official Ligligan Parul Sampernandu FB page for details and schedules.
To reach San Fernando venue of the Giant Lantern Festival, from Manila, one can take different buses: Five Star, Bataan Transit, Victory Liner… but please make sure to ride on one that will make a stopover at SM Pampanga, you’re drop off.