It's an international Christmas!
Christmas is a time for traditions, but around the world, traditions vary enormously as different countries have their own ways to come together and celebrate the festive season. Exodus Travels takes you on a journey to discover some of the world’s most interesting traditions.
Yule Goat, Sweden
Some countries may decorate a Christmas tree, Gavle (a town in Sweden) creates a 40ft tall goat made out of straw.The Yule Goat tradition has been going strong for over 50 years.
Yet every holiday season, time and time again, people will try to set the sculpture on fire. It’s become as much of a tradition as the goat itself, with intense heist style plans to remove it.
This includes one attempt in 2010 which involved a helicopter trying to kidnap the goat.
Kentucky Fried Christmas, Japan
Ovens are not a staple in Japan because the cuisine doesn’t call for it and space is small and minimal. The traditional Christmas turkey is hard to come by too which is why locals came up with the closest food to it… a bucket of KFC.
The fast food chain quickly latched onto the potential of its fried chicken being a Christmas staple so it rolled out a nationwide marketing campaign in the 1970s and it’s now a huge phenomenon. KFC even offers a “premium” whole roasted chicken.
El Caganer, Catalunya
Nobody’s really sure where El Caganer comes from, but he’s a staple of the Catalan Christmas nativity scene. The name translates directly as ‘the crapper’.
This small figurine appears in nativity scenes throughout the nation as a lovingly sculpted figurine of a peasant…defecating in the corner. Rather than being disrespectful, the figure of El Caganer is an incredibly popular, and longstanding custom dating back centuries.
Mass Roller Skating, Caracas, Venezuela
In Venezuela there are many Christmas traditions, from nativity scenes to special Christmas foods. One of the most interesting things is that the citizens of Caracas who have taken it upon themselves to make roller skating to church a seasonal tradition.
Services are well attended there, but those hoping to attend the early morning service on time are literally getting their skates on. It’s so popular that authorities close the roads in the morning to create better routes for the skaters.
Find your international Christmas getaway with Exodus Travels here.