The Lantern Festival is currently on in Lamphun. The small town in the South of Chiang Mai is really a chamber of treasures. It is well worth the ride to visit Wat Phrathat Haripunchai temple at night time to see people making merits here.
Since it is illuminated at night the best time is dark. We left Chiang Mai around 6 pm yesterday, Sunday night by the old road with its huge trees and it was interesting to see the local life and activities going on along the way. Lamphun is always a nice outing, festival or not.
In Lamphun, there was a night market. A kind of semi-version of a walking street nearby the temple.
The main temple Wat Phrathat Haripunchai was busy with merit makers. The point here is to hang up a traditional Northern Thai lantern. You write your name, maybe add a wish.
The benefits are plenty. Hopefully, your wish will be fulfilled, the temple gets funding(lanterns are 99baht), and it helps local lantern production and tourism.
It is a very graceful festival, a kind of pre-Yi-Ping/Loi Krathong arrangement.
If you don’t come for the lantern festival, there are many other things you can do in Lamphun. Read more about it here.