Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawai‘i


How can I get an Individual Lantern?
Only those with proof of reservation (Emailed receipt of QR Code or Booking ID) may pick up their lantern on Memorial Day, May 29th at Ala Moana Beach in the Lantern Pickup Tent located ewa of the fixed concession stand from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

To allow for as many to share in the experience of receiving and floating a lantern, we ask that each family or group to share a single lantern. Duplicate reservations have been cancelled.


Will there be any accommodations made for those with physical disabilities?
Limited parking for persons possessing a disability parking permit will be available in the Magic Island parking lot on a first-come, first-served basis. Access is available for those with placard or special license plate AND the corresponding Disabled Person’s Parking Identification Card.

For the safety of those in wheelchairs and those around them, we ask to not enter the sand. Volunteers are not allowed to assist. Please understand the risks to yourself and others around you.


Do I need to volunteer in order to float a lantern?
No. Those volunteering on the event day do not float their own lantern.


How many lanterns will be floated?
This year, there will be 6,000 lanterns.


Can I bring my own homemade lantern to float?
Out of concern for the safety of participants, the environment, and our volunteers, we ask for your kind cooperation to not float homemade lanterns. Our lanterns are tested for flammability in all weather conditions and are designed in conjunction with special lines strung across the water to ensure they will not float out to sea. There are many ways to be a part of the ceremony, whether by receiving an Individual Lantern or writing remembrances that will be included on the Collective Remembrance Lanterns. Please do not bring homemade lanterns. Any homemade lanterns that we retrieve will not be returned to their original owners.


I would like to participate, but I cannot be there to float. What can I do?
There are many ways to participate without attending in person. Please see the Take Part page for detailed information.


How much does it cost to participate?
There is no cost to attend, place a remembrance on a lantern, or float a lantern. However, voluntary donations received on the event day will be gifted to the City & County of Honolulu for the beautification of Ala Moana Beach Park.


May I make a donation to Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaiʻi? Where will my donation go?
There is no cost to participate in the Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaiʻi ceremony. However, any voluntary donations received prior to the event day go toward supporting the ceremony, and donations received on the event day at the beach are gifted to the City & County of Honolulu for the maintenance and beautification of Ala Moana Beach Park. You may dedicate a donation here.


Will it be on TV or streamed online? Will it be archived for viewing?
The ceremony will be broadcast live on KHON2 (FOX), KHII, and CW and from 6:30-7:30 p.m. HST (UTC-10). We will also be streaming live on this website, on @shinnyolanternfloatinghawaii Facebook, and YouTube channel. If you are unable to join us live, you will be able to view the ceremony in its entirety on this website after the event.


How else can I get involved?
We welcome all to be a part of our volunteer ʻohana. Volunteers assist in preparing lanterns beginning in the spring, to various duties on the event day and in June for clean-up. Each step is carefully done with reverence for those being remembered as well as those who are honoring them. To become part of our volunteer ʻohana, email us at [email protected]


What are the different kinds of lanterns?
Guiding Lanterns carry prayers on behalf of all of us for all who have existed. We have been supported by an unfathomable number of beings who have come before us, whether they be generations of ancestors or the animals and plants that sustained all life on our planet since its creation. Floating the six Guiding Lanterns ensures that spirits of all will be remembered in the Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaiʻi ceremony. Some examples of prayers on the Guiding Lanterns are “Victims of Natural Disasters,” “Victims of Man-made Disasters,” “All Tangible and Intangible Life in All Realms Past, Present, and Future,” and “Casualties of Violence Since Settler Colonialism in Hawaii.”

Collective Remembrance Lanterns are the original wooden-framed lanterns that were made by Shinnyo practitioners in the early years of the event and are refurbished each year. Remembrances, prayers, and messages that are received ahead of time from around the world and also from those who choose not to float an individual lantern are placed on these lanterns and floated by volunteers from the canoes and from shore.

Individual Lanterns are distributed at no cost, one per family or party. There are three sides of the lantern that are available for writing multiple remembrances. Those receiving an Individual Lantern will personally place the lantern into the water during the ceremony.


Who makes the lanterns?
The original wooden-framed Collective Remembrance Lanterns were made by Shinnyo practitioners in the early years of the event. In the spring, Shinnyo practitioners, individual public volunteers and groups from schools, businesses and organizations contribute their efforts to carefully prepare these and the Individual Lanterns for the event day.


What happens to the lanterns after the ceremony?
Every effort is made to retrieve every lantern from the water. The lanterns are cleaned and stored for refurbishment in future years. Remembrances and prayers are removed and handled in a proper and spiritually respectful way.


Are lanterns available for purchase?
The lanterns are not available for purchase as they are made specifically to carry the remembrances and prayers at the Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaiʻi ceremony and are refurbished for reuse each year. Thank you for your understanding.


Does Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaiʻi sell any souvenirs?
No, Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaiʻi is a ceremony and does not profit monetarily from any activities or saleable merchandise.


Is there food or beverage available for sale?
Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaiʻi does not sell any food or beverage. Our primary focus continues to be the safety of ceremonial participants and providing a meaningful event open to all. We appreciate your understanding and kokua by coming prepared with your own food and non-alcoholic beverages.Food and beverages are available for purchase at the fixed concession stands located on the mauka side of Ala Moana Beach Drive which are contracted by the City & County of Honolulu’s Dept. of Parks and Recreation. Please be aware that any food or beverage being sold by vendors, stationary or mobile, other than at the fixed concession stands, is unsanctioned and not in compliance with City & County regulations.

Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaiʻi assumes no responsibility for any damages that may occur through consumption of any food or beverage sold at Ala Moana Beach Park.


I am a food/beverage commercial vendor. How can I become a part of your event?
Lantern Floating Hawaii is a ceremony that does not offer any food or beverage for sale as other festival-style event may have.

Only the concessionaires contracted by the City & County are allowed to sell food or beverage in Ala Moana Beach Park unless given special permission by the Dept. of Parks and Recreation. However, the Dept. of Parks and Recreation will not make exceptions for any commercial activity within our permitted area.


May I film or photograph the ceremony for personal use?
Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaiʻi is a public event and many people enjoy recording their experience. We kindly ask that safety and courtesy toward participants be made a priority. For this reason, we strongly request that camera-mounted drones not be flown. We ask that requests for any commercial use of images of the Lantern Floating Hawaii ceremony be sent in writing to Nā Lei Aloha Foundation.


May we camp at Ala Moana Beach Park overnight before the ceremony?
No, Ala Moana Beach Park closes at 10:00 p.m. and opens at 4:00 a.m. each day.


May I decorate, attach items or adorn my lantern with lei?
Please write, draw or affix photos or images only to the paper provided. Please refrain from writing, drawing or puncturing the foam lantern base. We refurbish each lantern for use in future years. Due to potential fire hazards and to ensure the safety of our volunteers who retrieve the lanterns, please do not attach any items to the lantern. For environmental and fire safety reasons, we discourage adorning lanterns with lei.