What are you looking forward to most about Christmas? Decorating a Christmas tree? Going shopping? A dinner party? Or a Christmas present?
Every country has their own special Christmas celebrations which incorporates local culture and traditions. Let’s learn how other countries celebrate this festival!
Christmas in Iceland is a combination of religious and local folklore. Instead of Santa Claus, Icelanders believe there will be 13 Yule Lads delivering presents on Christmas Day. They will place their shoes near the windows 13 days before Christmas. The Yule Lads will take turns delivering presents every night. Nice kids will get candy, and naughty kids will get rotten potatoes.
Austria believes in Krampus! On Christmas Day, Krampus will come together with Santa, who delivers gifts to good children, and Krampus punishes naughty ones. Therefore, on Christmas Day, in addition to dressing up as Santa Claus, some people will dress up as Krampus just to make fun.
It’s common to eat Turkey on Christmas day, but you’ve certainly never heard of KFC’s fried chicken! With KFC’s very successful advertising slogan “Christmas is about KFC”, KFC in Japan has made history by celebrating Christmas by eating fried chicken.
Many Catholic Portuguese fast for a week before Christmas. The Consoada festival begins after midnight the mass. To signal the beginning of Christmas, usually they take meat, pudding and some traditional sweets as their supper and reserve a place for loved ones who have passed away.
We usually go on dates or gather on Christmas Eve where we count down for Christmas. In Sweden, the Swedes celebrate Christmas by watching cartoons. Traditionally, Swedes watch “Donald Duck and His Friends Wish You a Merry Christmas” on Christmas Eve.
Since the year 1959, when Sweden first had television and had only one channel, they have since then cherished American cartoons on Christmas Eve. Gradually, watching Donald Duck cartoons on Christmas Eve became their custom. According to “The Local Sweden”, about 3.8 million viewers, or 40% of the country’s population, tuned in to ” Donald Duck and His Friends Wish You a Merry Christmas ” in 2017.
6. New Zealand
Have you ever seen the Christmas Tree (Pohutukawa) in New Zealand? It is different from the Christmas tree we generally know; it is also unique in New Zealand.
December is the time of summer in New Zealand also the bloom season for the Christmas trees. The bright red flowers are particularly dazzling! In addition, the Māori also believe that souls of the dead will travel to the afterlife through the New Zealand Christmas tree.
7. Czech Republic
In the Czech Republic, throwing shoes on Christmas day is a test of marriage! Traditionally, unmarried women would turn their backs to the door and throw a shoe behind them. If the toe points to the door, the woman is about to get married, and if the heel points to the door, the woman will remain single for another year.
The different cultures and customs of Christmas around the world are really eye-opening!
How are you going to celebrate Christmas this year? Let’s decorate your Christmas tree and enjoy a wonderful dinner with your family! Make more space for your home, so that you and your family can spend the Christmas season in a relax happy mood!
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