Another year is ending. However, the best part of the last month of the year is the magic that comes with Christmas. The streets light up in bright light and colors of hope and happiness. Though Christmas is the birth of Jesus, it is widely celebrated as a symbol of a new beginning. Christmas is the festival to spread joy and cheer. There are different Christmas traditions and cultures across the world. Even though this holiday tradition around the world involves meeting and greeting family, there are interesting and funny traditions in every country you must know. Let’s go around the world to learn how other countries celebrate Christmas!
Did You Know? In Greek, Christ begins with the letter X. So, Xmas directly means Christmas.
Merry Christmas In Different Languages & Countries
The festival is no longer limited to religious followers. Many non-Christians also celebrate it across the world in their way. Christmas around the world is a reflection of local culture and traditions. Hop on the bandwagon to explore how other countries celebrate the magic of Christmas.
How Is Christmas Celebrated In Different Countries Across The World?
Have a look at Christmas celebrations around the world:
1. United Kingdom
Christmas eve and celebrations in the UK are a typical white holiday with an X-Mass tree decorated and surrounded by gifts and snow. Since England is wet and cold during the winter season, people love to stay indoors. However, they make the day special by wrapping the purchased gifts in beautiful sheets.
They bake cookies and cakes. Hanging stocking above the fireplace for Santa to drop gifts and singing carols are some of the things that make the day special. The following day – 26th December is celebrated as Boxing Day when all the families meet and have a hearty meal together.
The Christian population in China is small. However, they celebrate Sheng Dan Jieh. This is another term for Christmas and all its frivolities. Sheng Dan Jieh loosely translates to Holy Birth Festival.
The people decorate the tree of light, the Christmas tree, with paper chains and posters and paper lanterns. The red paper chains are a symbol of happiness. Moreover, people exchange gifts and celebrate together on the eve of Christmas.
Since Christmas falls during the summer season in Australia, festivities take place outdoors. There are carols by candlelight where the family gets together and light the candles and sing carols. Additionally, there are a sight and sound concert outdoor with fireworks and the usual exchange of gifts.
Did You Know? Santa Claus initially wore clothes that were in green, purple, or blue. However, Coca-Cola decided to dress him up in colors that match their brand, and that stuck.
There is a lot of history behind the celebration of Christmas in this country. In general, celebrations start on St. Nicholas Day- 6th December until 25th December. Children keep boots near the chimney for ‘ Pere Noel’ (Father Christmas). They also get sweets and small gifts.
The X-Mass tree is beautifully decorated and lit up with twinkling lights. Additionally, Eifel Tower and other monuments are wrapped in Christmas festivities with lights and sound shows.
In Germany, like France, December 6th is Nikolustag St. Claus Day. Germany celebrates Christmas on this day. On the eve of Christmas, the children leave out their shoes for their Christmas gifts. All those kids who have been good, they get small gifts and a lot of candies.
All these kids who have been a little naughty get a golden birch apart from some candies. The Golden birch is a symbol of punishment for their bad behavior.
6. Russia and Ukraine
Christmas comes a little late (or early) in these countries. This is because the Orthodox Church uses the old Julian calendar for religious celebrations. As a result, they celebrate Christmas on 7th January.
People sometimes fast for 39 days and organize special prayers. On January 6th, when the evening star appears, the people serve a 12-course meal to depict the 12 apostles of Jesus Christ.
Did You Know? The Christmas wreath is representative of the crown of thorns that Jesus wore.
Ireland does not celebrate the occasion any different than England.
However, their specialty is that they keep mince pies and a bottle of Guinness in front of their house as a snack for Santa when it comes to visiting. The Christmas eve celebrations are similar to England.
8. Spain, Portugal, and Italy
The citizens recreate the Nativity scene. The people create a model village of Bethlehem. It includes Mary, Joseph, and baby Jesus. Moreover, they place a figurine of ‘Shitter’ in the scene.
9. Caracas, Venezuela
People of Venezuela roller skate to the mass held on the eve of Christmas. This happens on such a big scale that the authorities have to block the city roads in Caracas. No cars allowed; it’s the roller skates season.
10. Scandinavia (Sweden, Norway, Finland & Denmark)
The way how Christmas is celebrated around the Scandinavian world is much different than the American way of celebrating Christmas.
For instance, the Swedes start celebrating the holiday season from the first Advent in December. They start decorating their houses, lighting candles, baking cakes and cookies.
Oh yeah, the Swedes love glögg (a famous Christmas drink that is spiced, usually alcoholic, mulled wine, or spirit).
Saint Luy’s Day or Lucia is also celebrated on December 13th every year with processions singing songs about mythical Saint Lucia, the bearer of light.
Final Thoughts On Christmas Traditions Around The World,
Christmas celebrations in different countries have a special tradition unique to local cultures. Over time non-Christians have also started participating in the spirit of Christmas. In general, Christmas holiday traditions around the world signify love, compassion, happiness, and new beginnings.
Did you enjoy reading about Christmas celebrations around the world? Share this Christmas message to your friends and brag about knowing awesome things around the world.
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We wish you a Merry Christmas and a very happy new year!