Celebrating Christmas around the world

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Celebrating Christmas around the world

Christmas in Australia

Unlike us Brits, the Aussie’s spend Christmas Day in the glorious sunshine. Therefore in true Aussie fashion Christmas dinner is usually barbequed. Seafood such as prawns and lobster are usually on the menu along with ‘traditional English’ food.

When it comes to decorating the house for Christmas, the Australians like to go all out. It is well known for neighbours to have competitions between themselves to see who can create the best light display. At night it’s not unusual for neighbours to visit each other’s houses to look at their light display as decorations can be put up as early as December 1.

Christmas in France

Yule logs made out of Cherry Wood are often burned in French homes; the log is usually carried into the home on Christmas Eve and is sprinkled with red wine to make the log smell nice while it's burning away. The French leave the log burning all night along with candles and food and drink, just in case Mary and baby Jesus come past.

The French traditionally eat their main meal on Christmas Eve or early Christmas morning after they have returned from the midnight Church Service. Dishes include roast turkey with chestnuts or roast goose, oysters, foie gras, lobster, venison and cheeses.

Christmas in Spain

Most people in Spain go to midnight Mass; therefore most families eat their main Christmas meal on Christmas Eve before the service. Turkey stuffed with truffles is usually on the Spanish Christmas menu, in the north-west of Spain the most popular meal for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day is seafood, much like the Aussie’s.

After the midnight mass, people walk through the streets carrying torches, playing guitars and beating on tambourines and drums, to kick start the celebrations.

Christmas in Zimbabwe

For most people in Zimbabwe, Christmas Day starts with a church service. After church everyone has a party in their home, and people go from house to house visiting their friends and family. At every house they have something to eat, exchange presents and enjoy the party.

A lot of people bring their stereo speakers into the front garden and play their favourite music, whilst they enjoy a meal of chicken and rice. Chicken is very expensive in Zimbabwe so it is usually only eaten on special occasions like Christmas Day. 

Also, everyone makes an effort, and puts on their best clothes. For some families the only time of year they get new clothes is Christmas so the parties are a good place to show them off.       

Christmas in Jamaica

Christmas is a very special time in Jamaica; the festive season brings non-stop celebrations, special treats, entertainment, festivals and big gatherings between family and friends. Some Jamaicans even paint their house and hang up new curtains in time for Santa Claus.

Christmas in Jamaica is usually the biggest family event of the year so they make the festive season extra special by preparing a feast for everyone to enjoy. Their Christmas day meal is usually prepared on Christmas Eve and traditionally includes fresh fruits, sorrel and rum punch and meat. Christmas Day breakfast includes ackee and saltfish, breadfruit, fried plantains, boiled bananas and freshly squeezed fruit juice and tea. After a full on breakfast, dinner is served late afternoon and this includes chicken, curry goat, stewed oxtail and rice and peas.

Have we tempted you to experience Christmas in another country? Or are you thinking Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without the cold weather, the same Christmas films and the Turkey dinner? Wherever you choose to spend the festive season this year we hope you have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.