In Seoul there is a lot to see and do for the Lotus Lantern Festival. However if you don’t want to/or can’t stay downtown for the weekend you have to pick and choose. The Lotus Lantern Festival happens in early May in celebration of Buddha’s Birthday. A friend and I picked the parade. The parade starts near Dongdaemun station exit 9 and runs along Jongno street. They set up chairs for people to sit and you can end up with a great view of the parade. I suggest not sitting next to a crosswalk. We did and ended up with the police officers trying to stop people from crossing the street and the people crossing the street in a lot of the photos (and film) we took. Which was frustrating.
The parade was long. It was over an hour, starting a little after 6pm. We arrived early out of worry that it’d be packed, but since we were at the beginning of the parade route it wasn’t very packed.Towards the end of the parade route may be different. It was still sunny for most of the parade but by the time it got near the end of the parade a lot of the lanterns and things were lit up, but we didn’t get to expereience the full effect, which I’m sure is beautiful. Just I don’t have a good enough camera for that and we would have probably not gotten out of watching the parade until 11pm. Which would have been to late to get home.