Simple Travels: Enchanted Forest of Light

The holidays always call for romantic date nights, and the Enchanted: Forest of Light is quite possibly one of the most magical spots to spend the season with a significant other. It's definitely one for the books and another thing checked off my bucket list since it's exactly my type of happy place. I'm all for unique interactive installations when it comes to places to visit, so I'd say this was worth every penny. Read more for photos of the stunning illuminated installations at the Descanso Gardens!

Photograph: Michael Juliano
Flower Power
The first station was this enchanting display of LED tulips accompanied by chiming melodies as the field would change colors. It unquestionably falls on my top 3 favorites because although it's not a real bed of flowers, it's a nice ode to the spring tulips that characterize the gardens.
Starlight Garden
The next site that gave way to the rest of the venue was this captivating arched pathway adorned with starlights and foliage. It's one of the most popular sites for photo shoots, so it's a surefire way to capture an aesthetically pleasing shot for the 'gram!
This lily pad-like installation was probably the most interactive one as it would change colors once you step on the gleaming platform. Children surely favored this the most but it should be just as enjoyable for all ages!

This birdcage-inspired work was yet another hotspot for photo-taking opportunities especially for couples, so we had to advantage of the optimal lighting and contemporary architecture. Luckily, the people in line were all very accommodating by taking each other's photos so there's no need to bring a third wheel as a photographer.

The Garden of Good Fortune
This area of the Japanese Garden was perhaps the largest installation but it's definitely a good use of the space. The glowing red lanterns and dark atmosphere elicit a certain mood and insight in the culture that it's trying to portray. I'm sure there's a profound story behind this piece and all the other pieces in this attraction, but I can't find their descriptions so you'll have to rely on your own subjective interpretations to find the meaning behind these works.

I was only able to capture a few of the stations because some of them were just better off experienced in person to really grasp their full beauty. For instance, my top favorite was a forest of trees lit up by thousands of green microlights resembling fireflies, and there was no way that a camera could've captured it and evoke the same response. I honestly didn't want to spend too much time taking pictures because an experiential attraction like this should be appreciated outside the social media realm. Instead, I tried to spend most of my time absorbing its wonder as I walked through the immersive forest with my special someone. This collection is truly an impeccable fusion of man-made art and nature's grace as it amplifies and accentuates earth's beauty rather than overpower it.

Despite the strong romantic ambiance of this magical place, don't feel like you need to explore it only with a significant other. It's just as pleasant with family, friends, and maybe even by yourself because every single installation is an experience worth noting. It's a mile-long path so don't forget to wear comfortable shoes! Hope this makes you want to get out there and explore this extraordinary sight!

'Til next time.



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