About Yi Peng (Yee Peng)
Yi Peng or Yee Peng (local name) is part of the festival of lights in Northern Thailand to show respect to Buddha. It’s date usually coincides with Loi Krathong which all of Thailand celebrates using floating lights on water. In Northern Thailand Yi Peng, which is celebrated alongside Loi Krathong, is different in that lights are placed into sky lanterns which float up into the air.
Loi Krathong still happens in Chiang Mai but the actual Loi Krathong floating lanterns on water event happens the day/night after Yi Peng.
Alongside the floating light ceremonies there are also parades, fireworks, displays of colorful lanterns and cultural highlights involving the Lanna. As Chiang Mai was the former capital of the Lanna Kingdom it holds the largest Yi Peng Festival.
Where to see the Yi Peng Festival in Chiang Mai
Please note that the 2017 sky lantern part of Yi Peng in Chiang Mai has not been confirmed yet and nobody is likely to know the exact date until one month beforehand. Loi Krathong in Chiang Mai is scheduled to go ahead though and that is usually when the sky lantern release (Yi Peng) takes place..
There’s a little confusion over where and when to actually see the spectacular lantern release during Yi Peng in Chiang Mai. Here’s a simple break down.
- The biggest lantern release is held behind Mae Jo University in Chiang Mai known as the Lanna Dhutanka grounds.
- There is a second release of lanterns for paying tourists only about a week after the official ceremony.
- Lanterns are released all over Chiang Mai city throughout the weekend festival (even in the days leading up to it)