With the festive season truly in full swing, we take a look at Christmas traditions around the world.
The Chinese have a tradition of gifting their friends and family with the Peace Apple. It is one of the most common traditions that has been observed till date. People send apples wrapped in cellophane with messages like Peace, Christmas and Love written on them.
According to local beliefs, having the Peace Apple will bring good fortune throughout the year.
In Sweden, The Gavle Goat is a giant straw statue of a goat constructed every Christmas in the town of Gavle. It’s essentially a massive Yule Goatmand was first installed in the town in 1966.
People believed the Yule goat to be an invisible spirit that would appear before Christmas to make sure that the holiday preparations were done correctly. it is often seen alongside or in replacement of Santa.
In Mexico, a nine-day tradition is done by reenacting Joseph and Mary’s nine-day journey to Bethlehem. During the observance, Along the way, children carry small statues of Mary and Joseph and travel around the neighbourhood while singing songs and asking their neighbours to give them shelter.
A pinata party is also held every evening of these nine days.
The Spanish National Lottery is a big deal at Christmas time, and almost everyone plays it, making it the biggest lottery draw in the world. The Christmas Lottery is so big that it has been given the nickname ‘El Gordo’ or the ‘Fat One’, because of the amounts of cash you can win.
The draw takes place on December 22 and the winning numbers are sung out by school children.
Illuminating a window in your home is an Irish Catholic tradition. A lit-up window symbolises that the homeowner would welcome in the holy family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph, unlike the innkeeper in Bethlehem that turned them away. It is also seen as a welcome to guests or family members returning home from far away.