Christmas Customs Around the World

The traditions and customs of Christmas make the celebrations of the holiday special. Wherever you call home, the unique history that is your heritage is to be treasured.

Take a glimpse into the old customs of these countries around the world---


A little man named "Jul-Nisse" lives in the attic. He takes care of the farm animals and causes mischief within the family’s house. No one can see Jul-Nisse except the family cat. Tradition holds that before the children go to bed on Christmas Eve, they must leave a bowl of porridge and a pitcher of milk at the foot of the attic door. On Christmas morning, the bounty has vanished!


Germany introduced three traditions that are indelibly tied to the Christmas holiday: the Christmas carol, Silent Night, Holy Night," Kris Kringle (also known as Santa Claus), and the Christmas tree (also known as "Tanenbaum").


Children clean their wooden shoes and fill them with hay and carrots. They carefully place the shoes on the windowsill along with a bowl of water for St. Nick’s white horse to partake on Christmas Eve. The next morning is filled with glee as the children discover the hay and carrots gone. In their place, toys and other small gifts are inside their wooden shoes.