The recent Macao Light Festival was said to be in demand, thus the Macao Government Tourism Office extended the event in order for tourists and residents to further enjoy the illuminations.
The event themed “Time Travel in Macao” is budgeted at MOP18.5 million – an increase from the previous years’ MOP18 million.
The fourth edition of the event introduced a series of highlights including 3D architectural projections and mapping technology, light installations and various interactive games.
The bureau seeks to turn the annual festival into an international event for the city, hence the significant amount of investment it was willing to put in the event.
The festival had three themed routes this year, covering 11 locations across the city’s five districts, having a series of activities that engaged with the public.
I went to four locations that featured light installations including the large ones in Taipa Houses Museum and in Arte Nam Van, and I thought that it was quite impressive for Macau to host such festivals, alongside the festive season.
It brought both residents and tourists to these sites and it had them wait on the projection mapping shows at different areas – which had a countdown for spectators to anticipate the kick off of the show.
The festival also brought teams from Portugal, Belgium and Macau to tailor and stage three different projection mapping shows at the Ruins of St. Paul’s at different periods.
Such investments brought a different entertainment and a different kind of ambience to both tourists and residents, and has added to some residents’ “to do” or “to visit” list for the weekend – something that we should be continually doing.
I often hear locals describing the city as boring, or that there isn’t really much to do on a weekend but I think the problem lies in how can we get attracted to attend smaller events such as art fairs or those craft products fairs that local creative stores are offering.
The Light Festival is one of the city’s highlights and it is almost unavoidable not to see them because we have the tendency to pass through them as they are spread pretty much across the city, especially in the peninsula.
I reckon we always have a series of activities occurring on weekends – yet we just fail to involve ourselves in these smaller events – or in traditional events that showcases the city’s culture.
Following the city’s grand events last month including the colorful and vibrant 2018 Macao International Parade, which featured a total of 57 performing groups, January is hosting fun activities and performances including the upcoming 18th Macao City Fringe Festival, which is set to kick off this Friday.
The festival is set to bring an array of local troupes and overseas artists.
With the increasing number of events that the city is hosting, I believe there is always something to do and to see in the region.
The SAR’s commitment to holding large festivals and annual events including the International Film Festival Macao, Macao Arts Festival or the annual Parade for Celebration of Chinese New Year – are slowly making progress towards its goal of becoming “world center of tourism and leisure.”
These festivals take a significant amount of time to materialize, especially those events that require hundreds of performers from different countries and regions.
Although there is still a long way to go, it is obvious that they are committed to integrating colorful and vibrant festivals and events in the city – to not only attract tourists but to entertain and meet the demand of the local residents.