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Christmas Around The World

Christmas Around the World

Christmas Around The World

As the holidays quickly approach, people from all over the world are preparing to celebrate Christmas. We are taking a look at the different traditions from around the world which make celebrating this special day so unique.

irish christmas

Ireland

In Ireland, the Christmas décor, including Ireland’s Christmas Markets, comes in full swing December 8th, and celebrations last until January 6th.  To celebrate the holiday, the Irish are known to hang up mistletoe in their houses, as the ancient Celts had believed that mistletoe had secret healing powers. More recently, the people of Ireland have also begun to add a Christmas tree to their list of holiday décor. Other ways to celebrate Christmas in Ireland include making “The Winter Warmer”, a hot whiskey to stay warm during the colder months, participating in a “Christmas swim”, and lighting candles in your windows during Christmas Eve.

italy christmas

Italy

Like Ireland, Italy begins their Christmas celebrations on December 8th and continues the festivities until January 6th. If visiting Italy during the holidays, you will find bagpipe playing shepherds performing tunes in piazzas, normally dressed in traditional sheepskin and wool cloaks. In Rome, crowds will gather in St. Peter’s Square for the pope’s evening mass on Christmas Eve. He will then appear at the basilica’s balcony on Christmas to give his blessing. At midnight on Christmas Eve, you will be sure to hear the ringing of church bells and if staying in Rome, you will also hear the cannons being fired from Castel Sant’Angelo, in celebration of Jesus’ birth.

edinburg christmas

Scotland

Christmas is a holiday that was once banned in Scotland, from 1640 – 1958 due to religious conflict, which means that Scottish Christmas traditions are relatively new. Some of these newfound traditions include the baking of Yule bread, a delicious treat made with caraway seeds which resembles a rope arranged into a circle. Other Scottish traditions are superstitious, many of which revolve around fire. The most famous practice is the burning of the Cailleach, also known as the Hag of Winter who brought the cold and darkness, in hopes of banishing cold, darkness, and hardships in the future.

Wherever you decide to celebrate the holiday season, we wish you a time of happiness, prosperity, and good health.

Buon Natale! Nollaig Shona Duit! Ablythe Yuletide! Merry Christmas!