This weekend saw us wrap up warm and head off to Liverpool for the Luminous Lanterns: Spring Festival of Light held at the Liverpool Festival Gardens, the former site of International Garden Festival in the 80’s.
Created by Liverpool Lantern Company, the same company who co-create the ever popular Chester Zoo Lantern Magic events over Christmas, they transformed the gardens and woodland areas into an extraordinary landscape or bugs, creatures and dinosaur fossils all illuminated using UV lights.
What is the Spring Lanterns Festival of Light?
The idea behind the event was to show what is usually hidden beneath the lake beds and woodland floors in a fun, almost magic, manner.
Things that usually creep, crawl and fly around at night were overblown in size and lit up against the night sky and woodland areas making it a delightful feast on your senses.
Some of attractions and creatures such as the army of ants and stick insects were static, while many others interacted with the visitors. Actors dressed as flamingos moved in a way that reminded me of a War Horse theatre production. Obviously the actors had studied their creatures behaviour and mimicked them so well you actually forgot they weren’t real.
An Owl cooing and wooing whilst flying amongst the woodland area, frogs ribbting in a pond and an army of ants crawling up a tree were just some of the other highlights of the self-paced walk, while brightly coloured giants roamed and mingled with the crowd to some unusual mystical music provided by a band in tow.
Strolling round the festival gardens at night with so many lights certainly caught Little G-Mans attention (for the 30 minutes he stayed awake) but the interaction between the animals (actors) and the older children was fun to watch. Wolves, bugs, giants and flamingos all moving in character as little ones looked on mesmerised.
Value for money
Considering it was only £5 for adults and £2.50 for children, the 2 or so hours we spent with friends walking round the festival gardens was fantastic value for money, something Little G-Man should enjoy and appreciate more next year when he’s a little older.
We’ll definitely be buying tickets should they repeat it next year, but I think they may also run a similar event at Festival Gardens over Halloween as well as the Chester Zoo Christmas Lantern Magic event in December every year.