Celebrating Cultures, Promoting Integration
On the 25th December, Christmas, one of the most “happening” sacred holidays is celebrated around the world.
The traditions being both cultural and sacred in nature, they are being followed and enjoyed for about two millennia now.
Some of the popular customs include decorating a Christmas tree, going to church for prayer, exchanging gifts, having meals with family and friends and the most exciting for the children is to wait for Santa Claus to arrive.
With the pieces of evidence provided, it is said that Jesus was born in the spring however, it is believed that the church chose the 25th December as the date of Jesus’ birthday. Being it a day of Saturnalia, a holiday to honor Saturn, the God of agriculture; the church thought of adopting and accepting the cultural festivities with Christmas.
Christmas, the most beloved holiday in the world is celebrated with lots of food and gifts. Though the celebrations are huge everywhere, still there are places where it is best celebrated.
- Bethlehem, West Bank
It is said to be the birthplace of Jesus and where better to celebrate Christmas? Being one of the best places to celebrate Christmas, it is thriving during the holiday which attracts families to the city. The celebration on the Manger Square and the Old City is capable of leaving the visitors mesmerized.
The feeling of winter, cookies, lit candles, and hot cocoa becomes deeper after the celebration at St. Catherine’s Church midnight mass.
- The Vatican, Italy
The Vatican, being decorated throughout the year, has special arrangements during Christmas.
The city is submerged with beautiful decorations and food. Vatican City pleases a number of people and pilgrims with the Midnight Mass at St. Peter’s Basilica.
- New York, USA
Movies! Everything to know about Christmas in New York is very much seen in the movies. The Rockefeller Centre is known to have the tallest Christmas tree. The Big Apple is covered with snow hence, a white Christmas.
The famous ballet performance of “The Nutcracker” takes place in the heart of the city. A glamorous variety of gifts, clothes, and everything are on display at the Fifth Avenue for the night. The lights don’t go out and the city sees the best of people the whole night.
- Santa Claus Village, Finland
Christmas is a time of celebration for everyone, especially the children, who bring out the best of wishes and desires. The jolly man Santa, in the village is most admired by the residents. The bright and merry man in his white and red attire is there to please and bring smiles to people’s faces.
An amusement park by the name Santa Park is not too far from the village and is another way the children and the families can enjoy their Christmas. For a white Christmas, this is the place to be.
It’s true it takes a village to raise a child but then it is also true it takes a village to raise happiness in all the children around the world.
- Dublin, Ireland
With the 12 days market at the Docklands, the place is all lit up with the seasonal hurrah.
The Temple Bar is all set with the cheesy pantos, lights, and the best of the best drinks.
There is Ice- Skating Rinks as well for more holiday cheer. The bridges of the whole of Ireland are beautifully decorated with lights and seasonal decorations.
Even though there is rarely any real snow, there is often fake snow decor around the city.
- Zurich, Switzerland
Another place with white Christmas. The beauty of this place is anyway a tourist attraction, but during Christmas, it is something beyond that.
The families are much welcomed during the holidays and are encouraged to be a part of the city’s traditions. Covered in greenery and astonishing lights, the choir of local youth delivering the carols covers the moonlight with joy.
- Tallinn, Estonia
When we talk about the Christmas spirit, this is the place where it’s most prevalent. Glorifying the cobblestone streets are the lanterns that are lit up by the end of the day. It is known that the first Christmas tree of the world was erected here in 1441. Even today, the tree that stands in the Town Hall Square of the city is of importance for the place and the people. It is surrounded by numerous huts selling a variety of handicrafts, snow sculptures, food, and drinks, and also a small zoo.
- Tokyo, Japan
Though New Year’s Eve is more important to celebrate in Japan than Christmas, still the place is fairy-lit. This can be expected from a non-Christian country but the city is still beautiful with Christmas lights. Not being a holiday on Christmas, Christmas Eve is still a big deal in Tokyo. There are activities resembling Valentine’s Day- a night filled with romance and couples. The feast involves fried chicken, followed by sponge cake topped with cream and strawberries.
- Montreal, Canada
As the second-largest city of Canada, Montreal is also known for its delightful pleasantries during Christmas. Geologically, it is as close to European Coast as it is to Vancouver. Combining the best of both worlds, the city shows its residents the time of their life during the nighttime parade. Gorgeously lit up, Montreal thrives on the best things of Europe and Canada during Christmas. With free concerts happening all over the place, there are numerous outdoor activities for visiting families and people.
- Strasbourg, France
With a series of themed Christmas villages, the city is turned into a fairytale location. With unbelievable holiday sights and delightful cooking, the place is filled with different aromas and scenery. Different villages have different attractions for their public. A number of concerts and many types of cultural events takes place during the holiday season. It is yet another place of festivities that come across during Christmas.
Christmas spirit is all about how well we can welcome the joy in our lives, how well we dwell with people and our friends. Christmas is all about love and warmth.
And on that note… We wish you a Merry Christmas!
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