In the last part of our Christmas Celebrations around the World series, we look at the country which is closely associated with Santa Claus or some may call him Father Christmas. It’s none other than Finland!
It is believed that Santa Claus resides in the northern part of Finland called Korvatunturi (or Lapland), which is the north of the Arctic Circle. Santa Claus receives millions of letters from people all over the world every year.
Christmas Eve is the most important day for Christmas celebrations in the Nordic countries. Finnish tradition has Santa knocking on the door asking “Are there any well-behaved children in this house?” All the children will reply excitedly that they have been obedient and nice and Santa will naturally give them their presents.
There is a special Finnish tradition where “Christmas Peace” is proclaimed in the old town of Turku, which is the former capital of Finland. This special declaration begins at 12 noon on Christmas Eve and lasts for twenty days. It is said that this tradition dates back to the 13th century. This tradition used to be practiced in all the Nordic countries but only Finland maintains this tradition until this day.
And what is a celebration without delicious food. Lutefish (salt fish) is served as the meal starter but some households don’t serve this anymore. A leg of pork with some mashed potato and some vegetables casseroles are some of the staples for the Christmas meal. Of course salmon and turkey are a must.
For the Finnish, Christmas time ends with Ephiphany which falls on January 6. By this day most people will have already put away their Christmas decorations and thrown out the Christmas tree.
- Crewing Online Wishes All A Merry Christmas And A Happy New Year!