Water Lantern Festival Utah – A Lighting Event You Must See


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Festival highlights

Welcome to the Water Lantern Festival Utah – a  magical celebration of community and connections.

water lantern festival main

About Water Lantern Festival Utah

The Water Lantern Festival in Salem, Utah, is a captivating floating lantern event designed to foster connections among its attendees. As families and friends gather along the serene waters, the festival creates a magical atmosphere that encourages people to share their hopes, dreams, and messages of love. Each lantern, gently set adrift, carries not only the warm glow of a candle but also the sentiments of those who release it, creating a communal experience that transcends the beauty of the individual lights.

This family-friendly event brings people of all ages together to partake in the enchanting spectacle. Children’s faces light up with wonder as they release their lanterns into the water, while parents and grandparents share in the joy of creating lasting memories. 

The Water Lantern Festival in Salem stands as a testament to the power of simple yet profound moments, emphasizing the importance of togetherness and the enduring bonds that make this festival a cherished annual tradition for families in Utah.

Festival Dates

The date for the 2024 Water Lantern Festival in Salem, Utah, is yet to be determined. Typically, this enchanting event takes place in July, embracing the warm summer nights. 

Families and friends eagerly await the official announcement, adding to the excitement of the festival. Stay tuned for updates and get ready to experience the magical display of a thousand lanterns lighting up the waters of Salem.

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An image inspired by the beauty of the Water Lantern Festival Utah

Where It’s Located and How to Get There

The Water Lantern Festival casts its radiant glow on the picturesque Knoll Park located at 150 W 300 S, Salem, Utah, United States. Nestled in this scenic setting, the festival transforms the park into a magical space where lanterns gracefully float on the water, creating a mesmerizing spectacle.

For visitors arriving by air, the nearest airport to Knoll Park is the Provo Municipal Airport (PVU), situated approximately 18 miles away. Travelers have the option to hire a taxi, use ride-sharing services, or rent a car to conveniently reach the festival location from the airport. Alternatively, for those seeking a train journey, here’s a detailed guideline:

Guideline for Train Travel to Water Lantern Festival:

From Salt Lake City, Utah:

  • Board the Amtrak California Zephyr train toward Chicago Union Station.
  • Disembark at the Provo Station.
  • Arrange for local transportation, such as a taxi or ride-sharing service, for the remaining 18-mile journey to Knoll Park.

From Las Vegas, Nevada:

  • Take the Amtrak Thruway bus to Salt Lake City.
  • Transfer to the Amtrak California Zephyr train heading to Chicago Union Station.
  • Get off at Provo Station and proceed to Knoll Park using local transportation options.

From Denver, Colorado:

  • Board the Amtrak California Zephyr train bound for Emeryville.
  • Alight at Provo Station and continue the journey to Knoll Park with available local transportation services.

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Festival Hours

The Water Lantern Festival in Salem, Utah, invites attendees to immerse themselves in its enchanting ambiance during the hours of 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm. As the sun sets and the sky transforms into a canvas of colors, the festival springs to life, offering a four-hour window of magical moments.

 From the early evening until the night sky is adorned with the gentle glow of a thousand lanterns, participants can experience the beauty and serenity of Knoll Park. Whether releasing lanterns or simply enjoying the spectacle, the festival’s evening hours promise an unforgettable experience for all who gather to celebrate the Festival of Lights.

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An image inspired from the Water Lantern Festival Utah

How Much Does It Cost to See the Water Lantern Festival Utah

The Water Lantern Festival in Salem offers an enchanting experience at a varied cost, with 2023 prices ranging from $26.98 to $55.99 per adult ticket. Notably, children under 7 enjoy free admission to this magical celebration. 

Each adult ticket includes a comprehensive package, featuring a wristband for festival entry, access to food trucks, a floating lantern kit, LED candle, commemorative drawstring bag, marker, playing cards, and conversation cards. 

Moreover, the ticket cost contributes to the responsible management of the event, covering expenses for collecting and removing lanterns from the water post-event, as well as cleaning up any surrounding areas. 

While details for the 2024 ticket prices are yet to be announced, enthusiasts are encouraged to stay tuned for the latest updates on this unforgettable Festival of Lights experience.

Weather and What to Wear

July in Salem City brings warm and pleasant weather, creating an ideal backdrop for the magical Water Lantern Festival. Visitors can expect daytime temperatures to range from the mid-80s to low 90s Fahrenheit (29-35°C), providing a comfortable atmosphere for outdoor festivities. As the festival extends into the evening, temperatures may cool down slightly, offering a refreshing respite from the daytime warmth.

Recommended Clothing for Water Lantern Festival:

  • Lightweight Clothing: Wear breathable fabrics like cotton or linen to stay cool during the daytime activities.
  • Comfortable Footwear: As the festival takes place in a park setting, comfortable shoes suitable for walking on grass are recommended.
  • Hat and Sunglasses: Protect yourself from the sun with a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses.
  • Sunscreen: Apply sunscreen with a high SPF to shield your skin from the sun’s rays.
  • Evening Layers: Bring a light jacket or sweater for the cooler temperatures that may occur in the evening.
  • Water-Resistant Gear: Considering the nature of the festival, water-resistant or quick-dry clothing may be beneficial.

Where to Sleep – Hotels Nearby

For those seeking a comfortable retreat after the mesmerizing Water Lantern Festival, Salem City and its surrounding areas offer various accommodation options. Whether you prefer a cozy inn or a modern hotel, here are some nearby choices to consider:

Quality Inn Payson I-15:

  • Location: 830 N Main St, Payson, UT 84651, United States
  • Description: A welcoming 2-star hotel located in Payson, offering a convenient and comfortable stay for visitors to the area.
  • Amenities:
    • Free Parking: Ample complimentary parking for guests, ensuring a hassle-free experience.
    • Free Breakfast: Start your day with a complimentary breakfast featuring a variety of options for all preferences.

Days Inn by Wyndham Springville:

  • Location: 520 S 2000 W, Springville, UT 84663, United States
  • Description: A 2-star hotel offering a budget-friendly option with practical amenities, including free parking and an outdoor pool.
  • Amenities:
    • Free Parking
    • Outdoor Pool

Fairfield Inn by Marriott Provo:

  • Location: 1515 S University Ave, Provo, UT 84601, United States
  • Description: A 3-star hotel with modern accommodations, providing a higher level of comfort and a convenient location.
  • Amenities:
    • Free Parking
    • Indoor Pool

Where to Eat

After a magical evening at the Water Lantern Festival, indulge your taste buds at Salem City’s diverse dining establishments offering a range of delicious cuisines.

Main Street Pizza Salem:

  • Location: 66 North, UT-198, Salem, UT 84653, United States
  • Description: A popular pizza restaurant located on Main Street, offering a cozy atmosphere and a menu filled with delectable pizza options.
  • Specialties:
    • Variety of Pizza Options

Oriental Garden:

  • Location: 412 UT-198, Salem, UT 84653, United States
  • Description: A Chinese restaurant known for its inviting ambiance, Oriental Garden serves a diverse menu of authentic Chinese dishes.
  • Specialties:
    • Kung Pao Chicken
    • Mushroom Beef
    • Various Chinese Delicacies

Smokin Roadside Grill:

  • Location: 621N UT-198, Salem, UT 84653, United States
  • Description: This eatery offers a unique experience with live music, specializing in smoked dishes prepared to perfection.
  • Specialties:
    • Smoked Chicken
    • Beef Sausage
    • Assortment of Smoked Delicacies

More Things To Do In the Area

Salem City and its surrounding areas boast a treasure trove of attractions, offering a diverse range of activities for visitors to immerse themselves in the natural beauty and cultural richness of the region.

Salem Pond:

  • Location: Salem Pond, Salem, UT, United States
  • Description: A serene and picturesque spot, Salem Pond is a beautiful water body surrounded by greenery, providing a peaceful environment for leisurely strolls, picnics, and birdwatching.
  • Activities to Explore:
    • Scenic Walks
    • Picnicking
    • Birdwatching

The Escalante Cross at Spanish Fork:

  • Location: The Escalante Cross, Spanish Fork, UT, United States
  • Description: A historic site featuring the iconic Escalante Cross, offering visitors a glimpse into the area’s cultural and religious heritage.
  • Activities to Explore:
    • Historical Exploration
    • Photography

Utah’s Hogle Zoo:

  • Location: Utah’s Hogle Zoo, Salt Lake City, UT, United States
  • Description: Located a short drive away, Utah’s Hogle Zoo is a family-friendly destination where visitors can encounter a variety of exotic animals, learn about conservation efforts, and enjoy engaging exhibits.
  • Activities to Explore:
    • Animal Encounters
    • Educational Exhibits

A Final Sparkle: Wrapping Up Your Unforgettable Experience at Water Lantern Festival Utah

In the heart of Salem, Utah, the Water Lantern Festival illuminates the night with its enchanting glow, creating a magical celebration of lights and connections. As families and friends gather along the serene waters of Knoll Park, the festival becomes a cherished tradition, fostering unity and joy. 

With lanterns gently adrift, carrying messages of hope and love, attendees share in the beauty of the collective experience. From the captivating display to the heartwarming rituals, the Water Lantern Festival stands as an annual spectacle, offering a radiant reminder of the power of togetherness and the enduring magic found in the Festival of Lights.


Is there designated parking available at the Water Lantern Festival Utah?

Yes, designated parking areas will be available for attendees. Please follow event signage and staff instructions for parking.

Can I bring my pet to the Water Lantern Festival?

Unfortunately, pets are not allowed at the festival to ensure the safety and comfort of all attendees. Please make appropriate arrangements for your furry friends.

Is smoking allowed at the event?

Smoking is typically not allowed within the festival grounds. Designated smoking areas may be available outside the main event area; please follow event guidelines.

Are there food and beverage options available at the Water Lantern Festival?

Yes, various food trucks and vendors will be on-site to provide a range of culinary delights. Check the event details for specific information about food options.

Can I purchase tickets at the event or is pre-purchase required?

While it’s advisable to purchase tickets in advance to secure your spot, some events may offer on-site ticket sales. However, availability is not guaranteed, and prices may vary.

Are there age restrictions for attending the Water Lantern Festival?

The festival is generally family-friendly, but check the specific event details for any age restrictions or recommendations. 

Is the Water Lantern Festival accessible for individuals with disabilities?

Efforts are made to ensure accessibility; however, it’s recommended to contact the event organizers in advance to discuss specific accommodations or inquire about accessible features.

What happens to the lanterns after the event?

The festival organizers take care of collecting and removing the lanterns from the water. Additionally, efforts are made to clean up any surrounding areas to maintain the environmental integrity of the venue.

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An image inspired by the Water Lantern Festival Utah




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