The parade in Fo Guang Shan were held everyday during the first one week of the Lunar New Year holidays. There were two sessions each day, one in the morning which starts at 10am and the other in the afternoon at 1pm. It usually lasted an hour to two each. The parade contingent moves around Fo Guang Shan, so it will be hard to miss them, especially with the band leading the way (below).
The morning parade is very much shorter than the afternoon session. We have the tribal dancers of Taiwan next.
Since it it the year of the Tiger, the kids are dressed up as Tigers to the rhythm of the Three Tigers.
And Chinese lady dancers.
These guys are just amazing. They can dance for 2-3 hours and is still smiling happily, enjoying every moment of it.
Finally we have the monks on alms round contingent. Heard it is the first time being showcased this year.
The afternoon session parade begins at the main entrance. During the first 5 days of the Lunar New Year holidays, there is an extended parade where a large contingent troop joined in with the parade from the Cloud Dwelling Building and they marched northwards towards the Buddha Memorial Center (佛陀纪念馆).
We have lovely Korean ladies distributing sweets.
Here is another one.
And more kids dancing along.
Wow. Guan Yin giving her blessings.
A large contingent of people started coming out from the Cloud Dwelling Building. This is the first group out. Efficient coordination is being made as this juncture to merge the large group coming in with the parade.
More ladies in tradition garb with lanterns joining in.
The main highlight of this large group is the offering of relics to the Buddha Memorial Center. Notice they are all holding on to Buddha representations or other precious treasures in their hands.
Here is another group of them. We joined in the procession and also started walking towards the Buddha Memorial Hall.
A contingency of monks. Looks like they are in jhanic bliss.
Check out the huge crowd of people!
It is a 20mins walk from the current monastery ground to the Buddha Memorial Center. Here we have a sight of the garden behind the Tathagata Building.
We have 'Prince Sidhartha' and his escorts. He is carrying a heavy headgear, so he cannot move his head that easily.
Straight rows of lotuses.
The large parade contingent moving on.
Moving down 3 contours in a circular manner.
We finally overtaken the parade and moved onto the front.
Wow! What a sight! From a distant as we looked towards our final destination, we noticed it was momentarily shrouded in mountain fog, giving this area a mythical asian feel (especially with the pyramid-like gigantic building in the distance). As we approached the entrance to the Buddha Memorial Center, it's epic proportions is simply dazzling.
We dropped by one of the pagodas which gave visitors a refreshing cup of drink and some brochures to read.
We started walking towards the main building. And took a photo of the incoming parade in the distant.
They have arrived. The time now is around 3.30pm.
More to come.
The great master himself, Venerable Hsing Yun (星云法师).
It really feels like it's a millennium back in time to the great Chinese empire where imperial procession were of a gigantic scale. Visitors who bare witness to this event will definitely leave home impress.
Bringing in the precious treasures.
One of the local tribal group.
Here we have the Lion Dance group.
Holy. Our prince. He's still looking straight ahead.
YS has captured a 2 min video and I uploaded onto YouTube to share with all.
The parade getting ready for the end point.
We have the great masters coming out. It is based on the Indian tradition where umbrellas were being offered to great Indian kings and respected masters.
The Buddha Memorial Hall and the large crowd. We believed there are close to 10k people here. Imagine this event taking place over 5 days and we have hundreds of thousands people visiting Fo Guang Shan in a week.
The floats were momentarily parked here.
And our group photo with it.