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9 Amazing International Holiday Traditions around the World

1.Beach Party – Australia

Christmas season would be amidst heat, limitless sun everywhere. But in Australia where the holidays fall during summer, it’s completely normal.

And in Australia they head to the beach where they indulge in picnics, swimming and volleyball, celebrating their Christmas.

2. Mummering – Newfoundland

Each December, Newfoundland throws the fun-filled Mummers Festival with parades, concerts and workshops. The Maritime province has a tradition of Mummering. The tradition is pretty cute– the boisterous practice of visiting neighborhood homes, dressed in elaborate disguises.

Through song, dance and comedic plays, the mummers try to remain unrecognizable to the people they visit. Mummers often adopt unique speech patterns, and postures, and men will dress as women and vice versa.
On the other side, if the homeowners identify the mummers correctly, the homeowner is gifted with food and drink.

3. The Cemetary – Finland 

In Finland, it’s a tradition to visit your buried relatives at sunset on Christmas Evening. This touching custom began in the 1920s when candles were placed on the graves of World War I soldiers.

Many cemeteries and churches hold brief services and prayers with hymns and moments of reflection, while family members lay lanterns and lit candles on the graves to remember departed loved ones. This custom is so good that it teaches children the importance of understanding about their ancestors .

4. Krampus – Austria

This is totally a demon creature which eat a little boy who has been a jerk all year. The hairy creature visits Austrian children annually, but where Saint Nicholas bestows lavish gifts to all the good little girls and boys.

Krampus does the unimaginable thing – he unleashes punishment to those on the naughty list. If he discovers a particularly bad child, he bundles him into a sack and carts the boy away.

5. Befana – Italy

During Christmas, Santa won’t be coming to any town in Italy. Instead,  an ugly yet kind old witch named Befana (‘giver of gifts’) controls the gift-giving duties.

As per tradition on the eve of Epiphany, January 5, obliging parents leave out a plate of regional cuisine (often broccoli with spiced sausage and a glass of wine) for Befana.  The Befana flying around the world by broomstick and entering each house by chimney, and delivers toys, clothing and candy to well-behaved children.

6. La Quema del Diablo – Guatemala

Around December 7, the peoples of Guatemala sweep their homes, collect trash from around their property and create a massive heap of it in the street. As a final touch, the pile is crowned with an effigy of the devil and set fiery.
This cleansing ritual is said to expunge evil spirits and negative energy from the upcoming festivities.

7. Mari Lwyd -Wales 

There are playing no games in Wales. Instead, in late December through to January, a knock at your door might unveil a strange visitor – decorated horse’s skull attached to a long wood pole and covered by a sheet or blanket. It’s the Mari Lwyd – the Grey Mare – and her party of five or six revelers.

The Mari Lwyd and her handlers travel through town singing and engaging residents in rhyming contests. Ideally, the Mari Lwyd and her friends win the impromptu competition, thus gaining entry to the home where their presence is said to bring good luck.

8. KFC – Japan

Christmas is not really celebrated in Japan, instead a December 25th tradition centers on KFC. This was started 40 years later, a unique tradition involving KFC continues in Japan to this day.

Te Colonel’s special recipe is so popular in Japan at Christmas that KFC suggests that customers place their holiday order two months in advance.

9. Spider Web Tree – Ukraine

In Ukraine, Christmas trees are often covered with spider webs. There is a mythology that a poor family who grew a Christmas tree from a pine cone. The children, so thrilled by the idea of their very own tree, spent months dreaming up ways to decorate it for the holiday. But the family was penniless, so the children could not decorate it.

But, upon waking, the children found a magic that spiders had spun webs of glistening silk around the tree’s branches. Each thread magically turned into silver and gold by the morning sun’s dance upon the tree’s bows. Today, Ukrainians will dress up their trees with spider webs to welcome good luck into the coming year.

What do you think?

Written by Daisy

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