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December 12, 2013

Lighting up the season

At the end of the year, many parts of the world are brightened by glittering displays. Holidays and festivals bring people out at night for a visual treat and interiors are bathed in festive lights. Life is made more colorful for a variety of celebrations. -Leanne Burden Seidel ( 37 photos total)

Sara Cervantes takes pictures of Christmas decorations at Pershing Square, Dec. 6, in Los Angeles.(Jae C. Hong/Associated Press)

Two young children inspect a giant Menorah in the port of Tel Aviv, Israel, Nov. 27. Hanukkah is known as the Festival of Lights and Feast of Dedication. (Oliver Weiken/EPA) #

Nepalese devotees walk holding lights on the eve of Balachaturdashi festival at Pashupati temple in Kathmandu, Nepal, Dec. 1. Hundreds of thousands people from all over the country gathered at the Pasupati temple a day before of Balacaturdahi to sow Satabij. (Narendra Shrestha/EPA) #

Visitors look at lights in a giant Christmas tree outside the Ion Orchard shopping mall in Singapore, Nov. 27. Christmas cheer sets in as festive lights and Christmas decor adorns the streets and shopping malls of the city state in the tropics. (How Hwee Young/EPA) #

General view of the Guinness Christmas lights world record made in Canberra, Australia, Nov. 24. Homeowner David Richards switched on more than 500,000 lights to raise money for the charity SIDS and Kids ACT. The previous record was 350,000 lights. (Alan Porritt/EPA) #

People visit the 2nd Croix Rousse tunnel reserved for pedestrians, bicycles and buses during its inauguration ceremony in Lyon late in the night Dec. 5 as part of the rehearsal for the Festival of Lights. The Festival of Lights, with designers from all over the world, is one of Lyon's most famous Festivals. (Robert Pratta/Reuters) #

An ultra-orthodox Jewish man lights candles on the sixth night of the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah, in a religious neighborhood of Jerusalem on Dec. 2. The holiday commemorates the re-dedication of the holy temple in Jerusalem after the Jews' 165 B.C. victory over the Hellenist Syrians when Antiochus, the Greek King of Syria, outlawed Jewish rituals and ordered the Jews to worship Greek gods. (Menahem Kahana/AFP/Getty Images) #

Nelson Teiler takes a photograph of the lights as he came out to watch as the Temple Square lights turned on for the first time for the 2013 season on Nov. 29, in Salt Lake City. (Matt Gade/The Deseret News, Matt Gade via Associated Press) #

Tourists visit the traditional Christkindelsmaerik (Christ Child market) near Strasbourg Cathedral Nov. 29. Held annually since 1570, Strasbourg's Christ Child Market, known as the oldest French Christmas market, will be held until December 31. (Vincent Kessler/Reuters) #

Kelly Orchard stops to look at trees that are illuminated at a preview for this years Enchanted Christmas at the Forestry Commissions National Arboretum at Westonbirt, Gloucestershire on Nov. 27, in Tetbury, England. Enchanted Christmas, is Westonbirts signature winter event, aimed to inspire festive cheer with an illuminated one mile tree-lined trail. (Matt Cardy/Getty Images) #

Christmas lights in the Via del Corso, one of the main shopping street of Rome, on Dec. 6. The six strips that change color from red to purple, symbol of the traditional "rainbow flag" and an expression of the gay rights movement, will make up the bright carpet of a mile and a half to get to Piazza Venezia to Piazza del Popolo. (Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images) #

Shoppers stop at stalls to browse the offerings at the Bath Christmas Market on its opening night on on Nov. 28, in Bath, England. Originating in Germany, Christmas markets have become increasingly popular in British cities too, as a way of boosting festive retail sales and visitor numbers. (Matt Cardy/Getty Images) #

City council workers install Christmas lights in Africa Unity square, Harare, Nov. 29. Harare City Council has begun installing Christmas decorations across the city as part of the upcoming festive season. (Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi/Associated Press) #

A light show is projected onto Brussels' Town Hall as part of Christmas events at the Grand-Place in Brussels, Nov. 29. (Yves Herman/Reuters) #

The illuminated tram of Debrecen Transport Ltd. on Kossuth Square in Debrecen, Hungary will run during the Christmas season from Advent to Epyphany. (Zsolt Czegledi/EPA) #

Visitors experience a light-show in the Great Conservatory of Syon Park which is illuminated in bright colours for their annual 'Enchanted Woodland' event on Nov. 22, in London, England. Now in its eighth year, the Enchanted Woodland allows visitors to experience the grounds of Syon Park after dark on a trail around the eighteenth century lake and inside the Great Conservatory. (Oli Scarff/Getty Images) #

Trees illuminated by Christmas lights are reflected in a puddle on Unter den Linden street near the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin Nov. 30. (Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters) #

Off-roaders with their sand rails, bikes and quads light up the night at the Oldsmobile Hill sand dune in Glamis, California, Nov. 29. More than 150,000 people came out to the sand dunes of Glamis in the Imperial Dunes county of southern California for the annual Thanksgiving Weekend gathering. Photo taken with a five-minute exposure. (Gene Blevins/Reuters) #

An oil lamp sits on the wall at a temple for the Hindu God Shiva during the "Karthigai Deepam" in Bangalore on Dec. 2. "Karthigai Deepam" is a festival of lights celebrated by Tamil Hindus on the full moon day of Karthigai month falling during November and December, and is observed in homes and temples. (Manjunath Kiran/AFP/Getty Images) #

An Israeli fisherman casts his fishing rod to Hayarkon river, against a backdrop of large menorah lights, lit by the Israel Electric company to celebrate the last day of the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah, in Tel Aviv, Israel, Dec. 4. (Oded Balilty/Associated Press) #

Juan Martinez hoists his daughter Kamila Martinez, 6, up so she can get a better view of the tree during the Macy's Tree Lighting Ceremony at Downtown Crossings in Boston on Nov. 29. (Essdras M Suarez/Globe Staff) #

Fireworks explode during the lighting ceremony for Rio de Janeiro's famed floating Christmas tree in Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas on Nov. 30, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The constructed tree is the largest floating Christmas tree in the world according to the Guinness Book of World Records.(Mario Tama/Getty Images) #

Climbers Daniel Arnold and Stephan Siegrist collaborated with climbing photographer Thomas Senf’s and Swiss mountain sports manufacturer Mammut to create unique mystical atmosphere images on the Eidfjord in northern Norway, using coloured flares, spotlights and headlamps. Eidfjord , three hours east of the city of Bergen, is famous for the large number of icefalls (frozen waterfalls) at over 500 metres (1,640 ft) long. "Photography and filming at night is a big challenge," says Senf. "The right lighting determines whether you succeed or fail." (Thomas Senf/Mammut/Photopress via Associated Press) #

"Pas Encore Mon Histoire" by Vincent Olinet from France floats in the Red Light District as part of the Amsterdam Light Festival in Amsterdam Dec. 6. The fifth Amsterdam Light Festival, is a winter light festival showcasing some 30 light sculptures and projections by international artists. (Michael Kooren/Reuters) #

People walk in the Light Labyrinth in the Wilanow Palace Garden in Warsaw, Poland, Dec. 6. The Labyrinth, made of over 150,000 color lamps and based on themes from "Alice in Wonderland" is a winter attraction for children. (Alik Keplicz/Associated Press) #

A woman passes a large menorah on Independence Mall on the seventh night of Hanukkah, Dec. 3 in Philadelphia. (Matt Rourke/Associated Press) #

Children play during the opening ceremony of Christmas season at the main square of Bogota, Colombia, Nov. 29. The Mayor of Bogota, Gustavo Petro, inaugurated officially the Christmas season with million of light bulbs in different parts of the city. (Fernando Vergara/Associated Press) #

Thailand navy cadets hold candles and watch fireworks light the sky during Thailand King Bhumibol Adulyadej birthday celebrations, in Bangkok, Thailand, Dec. 5. (Manish Swarup/Associated Press) #

The ceiling of the Marktkirche church in Hanover, central Germany, is illuminated during a festive Christmas light installation on Dec. 9. (Peter Steffen/AFP/Getty Images) #

People enjoy Christmas illuminations featuring the theme of "Christmas in the sea" in Tokyo's Shiodome on Dec. 7. (Kazuhiro NogiAFP/Getty Images) #

Young choristers take part in Bath Abbey's candlelit Advent Procession on Dec. 1, in Bath, England. One of the most popular services of the historic Abbey's year, which marks the beginning of Advent and the Christian year, takes the congregation from darkness into light with a mixture of readings and music supported by the Abbey's choirs. (Matt Cardy/Getty Images) #

People attend the Christmas lights illumination along the Medellin river on Dec. 9, in Medellin, Antioquia department, Colombia. (Raul Arboleda/AFP/Getty Images) #

A family lights a wish ballon during the inauguration of an artificial ice rink set by the Town Hall as part of Christmas celebrations, in Petare shantytown, in Caracas, on Dec. 3. (Leo RamirezAFP/Getty Images) #

The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree is lit Dec. 4, in New York. (Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images) #

Hindu devotees light oil lamps at a temple for the Hindu God Shiva during the "Karthigai Deepam" in Bangalore on Dec. 2. (Manjunath Kiran/AFP/Getty Images) #

People walk along the Christmas Fair with Christmas stars and a Ferris wheel, left, in Erfurt, central Germany, Nov. 27. The Erfurt Christmas Market is one of the most beautiful Christmas Markets in the whole of Germany, according to critics, with the square beautifully decorated with a huge candle-lit Christmas tree and a large hand-carved wooden creche. (Jens Meyer/Associated Press) #

Festivities are underway at the Dam square in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, Nov. 21, during the Turn on the Lights, the kick-off of the holiday season of the Dutch department store de Bijenkorf. (Koen Van Weel/EPA) #