ILLUMIN8: Festival of Light and Peace

ILLUMIN8: Festival of Light and Peace

ILLUMIN8 is held at The Great Stupa of Universal Compassion just outside of Bendigo, Victoria. Measuring 50 metres high and once completed 50 metres tall, it’s the largest pagoda in the Western world. A monument to Buddhist traditions and values, it is a symbol for peace a harmony amongst all beings.
For anyone searching for inner peace, or a feeling of togetherness, belongingness and connectedness, ILLUMIN8 is the festival for you.
Now in its sixth year, ILLUMIN8 has evolved out of the very successful Festival of Light which has seen thousands of people flock to Bendigo for the multicultural celebration of peace and harmony inspired by Buddha’s life.
This year sees the festival held across the entire weekend and coinciding with the Buddhist festival of Vesak, is an attempt to bring all cultures together, boosting peace and understanding.
Visitors to the festival can walk through the Peace Park and interact with different light installations and sculptures and travel from one stage to the next experiencing multicultural performance. Spend time browsing market stalls, eating delicious vegetarian and vegan food, and enjoying a variety of music and dance. We’ll light up The Great Stupa with an animated light show and spectacular fireworks on both nights.
We also welcome home the internationally known Jade Buddha for Universal Peace after his nine-year world tour. Consecrations of the Jade Buddha will take place at ILLUMIN8 on Friday May 18 (from 9am to 5pm) before being unveiled over the weekend. This is the largest Buddha carved from gemstone quality jade in the world, with the size and beauty of the statue making it a wonder of the world.
Now you know what it’s all about, the only thing you need to do is plan your travels and buy your ticket. They’ve got a few different options too, catering to every need. Whether you’re after a day pass, a weekend pass, concession prices or accommodation packages, there’s something to suit everyone.
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Taking place just outside Bendigo, getting there is all part of the fun as well. Car parking is made easy, with the option of pre-purchasing tickets ($5 a car, easy peasy), while coach buses will be running to and from Bendigo Train Station – The Great Stupa throughout the weekend. The fee is gold coin donation on boarding the bus, each way. If you’re coming from Geelong or Melbourne, trains will be running on their regular schedule to the Bendigo Train Station over the weekend. Head to trusty old V/Lline for all your scheduling deets.
In a time of resilience and pragmatic approaches, we couldn’t think of a way for people to come together and celebrate peace and harmony.
The event runs from May 18 – 20 at The Great Stupa of Universal Compassion in Bendigo.
For more information, head to https://www.stupa.org.au/illumin8.