New Year Customs around the World

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New Year is celebrated in almost all parts of the world to mark the end of the existing year and welcome the beginning of the next year. However, the way to celebrate New Year is also different around the world from place to place.


The New Year 2010 is coming soon. Let's enjoy the unforgettable melody of ABBA's the immortal song "Happy New Year" in the last part of this article and see how people in the world celebrate the New Year.


China: The fabulous dragon and lion will dance in the streets. People will wear red, the most auspicious color, and red envelopes with lucky money will be given to children. Tangerines are often given for good luck, but odd numbers are unlucky, so the tangerines are given in pairs.


Denmark: It is considered good luck to leave broken plates on the doorsteps of your friends. The more broken plates the more friends you have.



Spain: For good luck at midnight, the Spanish often eats 12 grapes which correspond to the number of months of the year. If the grape is sweet the month will bring good fortune, if the grape is sour bad luck will follow. If you choke, pray someone knows the Heimlich.



Philippines: Filipinos focus on all things in round shapes (representing coins) are thought to symbolize prosperity for the coming year, displaying heaps of round fruits on the dining table for New Year's Eve and wearing clothing with round shapes like polka dots.



In the Philippines it is traditional for children to jump up and down at midnight to ensure they grow up to be tall.


Thailand: Apparently throwing water on others is thought to bring good rains for the coming year.



Brazil, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Venezuela: It's considered lucky to wear special underwear on New Year's Eve. The most popular colors are red and yellow: red is supposed to bring love in the coming year, and yellow is supposed to bring money.


Scotland: In Scotland first footer who is first person to enter a home after midnight on the first day of the year should be a male, preferably with dark hair. Blondes may have been associated with Vikings - visitors who never brought good luck.



He is traditionally carry a gift for luck (whiskey is the most common) to share with the occupants of the house but all first footers should carry a lump of coal which ensures the house will be warm and safe and a piece of shortbread to ensure the household will not go hungry during the coming year.




The United States: The New Year's kiss is actually more interesting than just puckering up and kissing your loved one, or a drunken stranger, who knew. Kisses at midnight are traced back to the days of masquerade balls. The masks represented evil spirits and the midnight kiss served to purify one for the New Year.



Vietnam: The Tet holiday is the Lunar New Year Holiday - the most important holiday in Vietnam. It is around late January or early February, depends on each year. We celebrate three days beginning of the New Year; the first day of New Year marks the beginning of Tet. This year, the New Year Day is in February 14th. Here are some images about the New Year's celebration in Vietnam.

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New Year Customs around the World

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This article was published on 2009/12/29
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