Christmas celebrations around the world.
Christmas is here! Christmas for many is a great time to rest and spend some quality time with family, have some good, healthy food on the table - and even though recent times haven’t exactly been normal, Christmas is nevertheless a time for celebration! But did you know that Christmas is celebrated in different ways around the globe? Many different cultures have their own festivities - and introducing your child to various Christmas celebrations around the world raises their awareness of different cultures, and induces a sense of curiosity for learning and exploring.
So, to get your kid started, here are a few Christmas traditions around the world that may surprise you.
The Yule Goat is an old tradition of Sweden, where small straw versions of the animal would be placed outside homes during the festive season. Once a part of ancient pagan festivals, in 1966 the tradition gained new life when the idea was suggested to make a giant version.
This is now called the Gavle Goat, which is often more than 42 feet high and 23 feet wide - weighing over 3.6 tons! The Gavle goat is constructed in the same spot as a symbol of Swedish Christmas! In fact, you can even live stream the event from the first Sunday of Advent to New Year’s Eve.
The western countries aren’t the only ones going all out with Christmas decorations. During Christmas in the Philippines, the city of San Fernando holds the Giant Lantern Festival, aka Ligligan Parol, featuring dazzling lanterns that symbolise the Star of Bethlehem. Each of these lanterns contains thousands of spinning lights which decorate the skies with Christmas joy! In addition, almost every household will have the traditional lechon - a whole pig cooked slowly on fire. However, nowadays, most Filipinos are shifting to healthier eating habits even during grand occasions.
One of the best things about Christmas is celebrating the holidays with family. And one of the best Christmas celebrations around the world for family time is from Finland.
On Christmas morning, families in Finland eat a porridge made of milk and rice, topped with milk, butter, or cinnamon—but with a surprise, a hidden almond. Whoever finds the almond inside their puddings wins. At the end of the day, the families enjoy some time in the sauna together.
On the other end of Europe, Christmas is celebrated differently - not just in tradition but also in the dates. The Ukrainians celebrate Christmas on January 7th by dressing up in their traditional attire and walking around the town singing carols.
And they end the day with a special dish called kutya, which is made of cooked wheat, honey, nuts, and ground poppy seeds. And some families even throw a spoonful of it to the ceiling; if it sticks, the harvest is expected to be good!
Christmas is a special festival, and from the cold corners of Alaska to the colourful streets of India, it is celebrated in unique ways. Teach your kids about these Christmas celebrations around the world and watch their eyes turn with awe. And what do you know, they might start adopting these unique traditions for the next Christmas!
This article contains general information regarding health and well-being. This information is not intended as advice and should not be treated as such. You must not rely on the information on this website as an alternative to advice from medical or educational professionals.