NC Chinese Lantern Festival

Any Night Tickets


  • This ticket offers flexibility.  Purchase an Any Night ticket and attend any night you choose (tickets are one time use).
  • Any Night tickets make the perfect gift. 
  • Not sure when family will be in town or what your schedule looks like, then this is the ticket for you!
  • Any Night tickets are not valid for the Twilight Experience tickets.


Twilight Ticket Experience


Enjoy the lanterns during the “Golden Hour".  This ticket type presents the perfect backdrop for memory making photos!  Twilight gates open at 4:30 - 10:00pm on Monday - Sunday only, excluding holidays. 

  • Twilight Tickets are offered Monday - Sunday only, excluding holidays. 
  • This ticket allows you early entry and reduced crowds as you witness the lanterns come to life in the night sky.
  • Perfect for those that want a little extra time and more room to move around.
  • No discounts available. Tickets are date specific.
  • Limited Availability each night offered.
  • ANY NIGHT tickets are NOT Valid for this experience.
Date Specific Tickets


  • Date Specific tickets allow you to pick the specific date you want to attend the festival.
  • Ticket prices increase if purchased on the date of the event. 

  • Sunday - Thursday discounts available for Military, Senior 55+, College Student (must have valid ID). Discounts are not offered on Holidays.
Groups of 20+


  • Group rates are for Date Specific tickets only. You must know the date you plan on attending.
  • Kids 2 and under are free and do not count towards your total group number. 
  • You must have 20 or more to qualify as a group.
    • Use the "Buy Tickets" link to purchase 20-49 tickets. 
    • Email our Group Coordinator to purchase 50 or more tickets and/or inquire on booking a private area. 
  • A private hospitality area is available onsite if you would like to have a gathering spot and/or cater for your guests.
    • A $275 fee will be charged if reserving the Kona Big Wave Club “private area”.
    • Inquire with our Group Coordinator if you are interested in renting this space.
  • Group discounts are offered Sundays - Thursdays, excluding Holidays and a Blackout period December 16th - January 1st, 2025.
Light Up Your Learning

Looking for a fun way to keep students learning? Check out our free NC Chinese Lantern Festival Lesson Plans. From the history of the festival to how these sculptures are crafted, we have four days of lessons and activities created and ready to go for your students grades K-5. Download today!

Accessibility Information

We strive to provide a positive experience for all guests. Our goal is to facilitate accessibility on our website and mobile site to better allow patrons to learn about events and purchase tickets with ease.

Planning on visiting our venue for this event and need to take advantage of our Accessibility Services? Let us know your needs by filling out the form below.  This is not required. 



If you have difficulty using or accessing any element of this website or the Koka Booth Amphitheatre mobile site, please feel free to call us at 919-462-2025 or email us at We will work with you to provide the information, item, or transaction you seek through a communication method that is accessible for and consistent with applicable law. 

Please contact us at 919-462-2025 or email us at if you have any feedback or suggesstions as to how we could improve the accessibility of this website. 

More information may be found HERE

Bag Policy

To expedite entry into the festival, we recommend packing as light as possible. We encourage guests to leave bags/purses at home.

Look for our “No Bag line” at the main entrance. 

Types of bags allowed:

  • Bags 6"x 8" or smaller are permitted.
  • Clear Bags no larger than 12" x 12" x 9"
  • Medical, Parenting, & Camera Bags

All bags are subject to search.   

Box Office Information

NOVEMBER 16, 2024 - JANUARY 12, 2025:


Daily, Monday - Sunday 4:00 pm - 9:00 pm

  • Koka Booth Amphitheatre is a cashless venue. Accepted Method of Payments: MasterCard, Visa, Discover, & American Express, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and Google Pay. 
  • The box office is located at 8003 Regency Parkway, Cary, NC 27518, directly next to Gate 1. 
  • Tickets may be purchased at the Koka Booth Amphitheatre Box Office during operating hours. We are NOT able to sell tickets by phone at the ticket office. 
  • Call ETIX at 800-514-3849 to purchase tickets by phone. You will pay processing fees to use this service. 
  • You will NOT pay ONLINE fees when purchasing tickets at the box office. 
  • We strongly encourage purchasing tickets in advance.  Tickets may not be available on the day/night of the event. 
  • Taxes: Tickets for Koka Booth Amphitheatre events are subject to applicable taxes and fees. Taxes will be added on top of the posted ticket prices.
  • Fees:
    • When ordering Online or by Phone through Etix additional fees will be added on top of the ticket price. A $2.50 order fee will be added to each order.
    • When purchasing in person at the Box Office a 3% processing fee, plus taxes will be added on top of the ticket price. 

FAQ's: Tips on planning your visit

  • We strongly encourage purchasing tickets before the night you choose to attend.  Tickets may be purchased online or in person at the box office. 
  • Lines & wait times may be longer to purchase tickets & to enter the festival on Weekends, Holidays & warm weather nights.
  • Please pack as light as possible when attending the festival. 
  • Please review our Clear Bag Policy, Items Allowed and Items Prohibted prior to your visit.  
  • Patrons will be walking through (not driving through) the venue to observe the light displays, however, there will be limited seating on the crescent deck for those who want to relax and take in the view!
  • Venue food & beverage stands will be open selling an assortment of asian inspired food and holiday treats. Top off one or more of these items with a yummy hot chocolate, plain or spiked, before or after your walk through the lanterns.  
  • Food Trucks will be on-site Friday & Saturday only. A list may not be provided as food trucks are subject to change. 
  • Twilight purchasers should arrive before 6pm, and are welcome to stay as long as you'd like.  Gates close at 10pm. 
  • 6pm ticket purchasers do not need to arrive at 6pm.  
  • It takes most guests about 45-75 minutes to view all the display

Food & Beverage

For this event, guests are not allowed to bring in outside food & beverages. 

Check back closer to the event for an updated menu!



Fun Facts

Did you know?
The ancient art of Chinese lantern making began in the Han Dynasty (206 BC to 220 AD), a significant period for science and innovation. Each year during Chinese New Year, families view colorful lanterns to symbolize respect and prosperity.
Our community is host to more than 25 Chinese artisans and performers who arrive in North Carolina in early November to hand assemble lanterns and prepare for exciting Chinese cultural performances during this annual celebration.
The North Carolina Chinese Lantern Festival is produced by Tianyu Arts & Culture, Inc., in cooperation with the Town of Cary.
Only the select communities of Seattle, Oakland, Oklahoma City, Little Rock, and suburban Orlando join Cary as hosts to Tianyu-produced Chinese lantern festivals during this holiday season.

Fast Facts
The spectacular Chinese Dragon floating on Symphony Lake is longer than three school buses at approximately 200 feet. It stands 21 feet high and weighs 18,000 pounds.
Fun fact: its head was installed by a crane with a 15-person crew!
Each lantern is created by hand on silk fabric stretched over steel frames and then lit with upwards of hundreds of LED.
Lanterns are designed exclusively for this event with materials shipped from China into the North Carolina Ports in Wilmington.
It takes 15+ tractor-trailers to deliver materials for our visiting artisans to assemble this year’s 36 lantern groupings.
Most lanterns are made in only one city: Zigong, in the Sichuan province, the lantern capital of China for many centuries.
Our visiting artisans have lantern-crafting skills that are passed down from one generation to the next.
Most traditional Chinese lantern festivals are celebrated on the 15th day of the first month in the lunar calendar, marking the last day of the lunar New Year. This tradition dates back 2000 years.
In ancient times, lanterns were fairly simple and only the emperor and noblemen had large, ornate ones. In modern times, lanterns have been embellished with complex designs such as the ones on display here in Cary.
The prominence of red in the designs symbolizes good fortune in the new year.
Instagram: @booth_amp; @NCChineseLanternFestival | Facebook: @BoothAmphitheatre; @NCChineseLanternFestival Share photos by tagging us and including #CaryNC #NCChineseLanternFestival

Items Allowed

To expedite entry into the festival, we recommend packing as light as possible. 

We recommend no bags. However, if bags must be brought in:

  • Clear Bags no larger than 12" x 12" x 9"
  • Medical, Parenting, & Camera Bags
  • Bags 6"x 8" or smaller are permitted.

All bags are subject to search.                                                                     

Guests are welcome to bring the following items:

  • Factory Sealed Bottled water (2 per person - No glass/canned or flavored water)
  • Cameras, tripods & selfie sticks
  • Tablets
  • Blankets
  • Raincoats
  • Ponchos
  • Strollers/Stroller-wagons
  • Scooters and/or Wheelchairs for our guests with disabilities
  • Umbrellas

Please Note: All guests pass through metal detectors for most events. If metal detectors are not in use, security will be wanding individuals.

Items Prohibited

Prohibited items will need to be returned to the guest's vehicle before entering.  

Please leave the following items at home: 

  • Alcohol                                                                                                 
  • Backpacks
  • Bags (Unless clear & approved size) 
  • Balloons, Banners & Signs 
  • Brochures/Stickers/Handouts     
  • Confetti/Glitter                                                                          
  • Coolers of any kind                                                                       
  • Drones                                                
  • Fireworks
  • Food & Beverages (Except Bottled water) 
  • Glass Bottles of any kind                                                
  • Grills & Open Flames                                            
  • Illegal Drugs                                      
  • Laser Pointers                                   
  • Lawn chairs.                                      
  • Mats of any kind, including yoga mats                                                 
  • Noise Makers                                    
  • Pets of any kind (Excluding service animals)                                      
  • Bags 6"x 8" or smaller are permitted.
  • Sporting equipment                        
  • Tables of any size                                           
  • Tarps, plastic sheeting                   
  • Tents/Stakes                                                       
  • Wagons/Carts                                  
  • Weapons of Any Kind (Including but not limited to knives, guns, tasers, chains, studded/spiked jewelry)                                                                                   

Kids Tickets

  • Please include children ages 3 and older when making your purchase. 
  • Children 2 & under are free for this event and do not need a ticket. 

Media Images

Please feel free to use these images for promoting the NC Chinese Lantern Festival and please be sure to include photo credit to Liz Condo Photography when using in any pr, social media, blog, etc. Thank you!

Merch Available at The Shirt Shop

Be sure to get your NC Chinese Lantern Festival commemorative apparel when you visit KBA! Red and gray, short and long sleeve options, plus kids shirts too! 


PREFRRED PARKING: A limited number of preferred parking passes will be available in advance ($10) and the night of the event for $15.00 per car.  When purchasing please make sure you are choosing the correct date you will be attending.

GENERAL PARKING: Koka Booth Amphitheatre has approximately 1500 free spaces available.  Parking is free of charge in Amphitheatre-owned lots. Some local businesses may charge a fee for parking in their lots. 

ACCESSIBLE PARKING: A limited number of accessible parking spaces are available on a first-come-first-served basis with the proper hang tag or license plate.

BUSES: Please contact us at 919-462-2025 ahead of time if your group is arriving on a bus of any size.  We need to be able to plan to accommodate bus drop-off, pick-ups & parking if needed.


Re-Entry is not allowed for this event. 

Related Links



Weather Policy

This event will go on Rain or Shine.  Please visit our website, social media, sign-up for SMS alerts or call our weather hotline 919-459-8332 in the case of extreme weather conditions and/or slippery road/surface conditions.


Patron safety is our top priority. In the best interest of our guests, we may decide to close on nights we feel walking conditions are unsafe.


The venue is not able to provide wheelchairs for patron use. Guests with disabilities may bring in a wheelchair or scooter to use for the event. These are the only type of scooters allowed.

Venue walkways are paved and are wheelchair accessible.