Christmas day is celebrated around the world, many countries celebrate with weird & unique Christmas traditions. A month full of Happy Holidays (Christmas, New Year, Epiphany). The preparation for Christmas celebrations starts from “Advent” four weeks before Christmas on Sunday and go up to ‘Epiphany’ 12th day after Christmas on January 6.
Christmas in Finland :
Christmas in Finland is called Joulupukki (means ‘Santa Christmas Goat’). People believe that Santa Claus lives in the North part of Finland (Lapland). The celebration starts from Advent on the first Sunday of December and December 13th marked as St. Lucia Day. People start shopping, decorate houses, light candles and families visit cemeteries to light candles on the graves of their loved ones. Christmas Eve starts with having rice pudding, later Christmas carols are sung and at night mulled wine is served with gingerbread, pastries and a wood fired sauna.
Christmas in Germany :
Christmas Day is known as ‘Erster Feiertag’ and celebrations start on December 24 evening and go up to December 25 and 26. Christmas celebrations start early with Advent from Sunday and on December 6th, families celebrate Nikolaustag (Feast of Saint Nicholas Day) , dress like Santa, visit nearby homes and give gifts to children. People display a traditional wooden Christmas pyramid in the living room beside a Christmas tree and decorate with angels and nativity story scenes.
People use real fir or pine trees to decorate for Christmas Eve, houses and gardens are decorated with festive lights and statues. On January 6, children dressed as Three Wise Men ‘Sternsinger’ go house to house and sing carols, pray, bless and get money as a return gift.
Christmas in USA :
The preparation for Christmas celebrations starts from “Advent” four weeks before Christmas on Sunday or from Thanksgiving on 4th Thursday and goes up to ‘Epiphany’ 12th day after Christmas on January 6).
People go to Church on Christmas, where special Carol services and events are held and the story of Christmas is told. People decorate their houses with lights, statues of Santa Claus or Snowmen. And a big family dinner is organized with friends and give gifts to each other. Towns and city streets are decorated with lights to celebrate Christmas.
Christmas in Australia :
In December Australia’s temperature is hot, so people celebrate Christmas on the beach having beer with light food not like in Europe. People celebrate with family and friends, enjoy food & drink and give gifts.
People also celebrate Christmas in July in winter or cold weather also known as Yulefest or Yuletide. July is the coldest month of winter in Australia, having roasted food with warm drinks in front of fireplaces.
Christmas in Israel
Christmas is not widely celebrated in Israel, except Nazareth and Bethlehem with lots of lights and market decorations. Then Christmas Eve parade, big firework display and the Midnight Mass Service & processions, Carol concerts are held. People dress up in traditional attire and partake in the Parade which represents the Mary and Joseph journey in the Christmas story. The Jewish people celebrate the Hanukkah festival from December 18th – 26th ends in the evening at the same time as Christmas.
Christmas in France :
The Celebration starts with Advent Calendars (calendriers de l’ Avent) and the main celebration is on Christmas Eve and ends on Epiphany Three Kings Day. Many traditions held during this Christmas month long celebration attend Mass at midnight, people enjoy food Le Reveillon, smoked salmon, foie gras(goose or duck liver pate), turkey, veggies and ‘La bûche de Noël’ cake and have Les Treize (13 desserts) after having feast which symbolize Christ and 12 apostles, mulled wine.
Christmas in Italy :
Christmas in Italy starts on December 8 with feast of Immaculate Conception where Italians traditionally put the Christmas tree. And the celebrations go up to Epiphany January 6, the whole month lights up with joy, gift giving, market shopping and many traditions held during this time. Many places like Piazza Navona, Mazzini, Vatican city, Piazza Barberini, Venezia became the first choice of tourists to spend time during Christmas.
Many traditions are held like attending Mass at midnight at Vatican, and celebration goes on and must attend New Year’s Eve with dance, live music performance, fireworks display in Piazza del Popolo, ‘Via dei Fori Imperiali’.
Christmas in Ireland :
In Ireland Christmas is ‘Nollaig’ and Santa Claus is known as ‘San Nicolas’. People start the decoration of Christmas from December 8 (Feast of the Immaculate Conception) and attend mass on Christmas Eve and celebrate with family. The next day St. Stephen’s Day is also important in Ireland, UK, many events football matches, horse racing, are held and Wren Boys Procession takes place on this day. Traditional food like round cake, turkey and Christmas pudding are served on Christmas.
Christmas in Netherlands :
Dutch people’s celebrations start from november and end in January. People love to celebrate Christmas with family having feast and traditional food, playing games, watching movies, attending mass. Lakes are frozen, it’s a great place to spend time in the Netherlands, markets are decorated with lights full of people having food and warm drinks.
People start Christmas celebrating the event ‘Sinterklaasavond’ with the arrival of Sinterklaas on November 13, gathering alongside the Amstel river to catch a glimpse of Sinterklaas figure on a well decorated speedboat. Then joins the parade on white horse and marches towards the main streets of Amsterdam. Dutch people enjoy traditional food Speculaas (cookies), Oliebollen, Kerststol(bread with nuts).
Christmas in India :
Although with less population of Christians in India, its celebrated mostly in Churches with midnight mass, many luxurious hotels serve buffet as feast during Christmas Eve. ‘Goa’ is the best place to celebrate traditional Christmas. Many old Portuguese styled Churches are decorated, carols are performed, midnight mass and many events are held during Christmas.
‘Kolkata’ Park Street, is also illuminated with lights and decorations, many food stalls, markets full of people enjoying food, wishing each other and giving gifts.
What is Christmas Day 2023 ?
Christmas Day is to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ (the Son of God) on December 25, 2023. Billions of christians celebrate Christmas with gusto around the world with many different traditions at Church and houses with family & friends.
What is Easter 2023 ?
Easter is also the most important holy day for the Christians like Christmas, on Easter which celebrates the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ celebrated by both christians and Orthodox christians. Easter is preceded by Lent (a 40 day period of fasting and prayer). Easter Day is on April 9, 2023.
What is the Yule festival 2023 ?
Yule festival is celebrated by German peoples or pagan celebration of winter solstice (one of oldest winter festival celebrations). This year’s Yule festival occurs from December 21, 2023 to January 1, 2024.
What is St. Stephen’s Day 2023 ?
St. Stephen’s Day (or Boxing Day or Wren Day in Irish or Constitution Day) is celebrated on the next day of Christmas on Decemeber 26. This day is celebrated to commemorate the first Christian Saint Stephen martyr and known for his service for the poor & needy people.