Across the world, many different countries have found ways to ring in the New Year. In the United States, many people sit and observe the famous ball drop at Times Square, but in many other countries, here are the different and unique traditions. Every one of these traditions is unique to the culture within the country and is used as a way to bring families and friends closer together.
For the Greeks, they celebrate the New Year by eating a cake called the Vasilópita, which is baked with a small prize or a coin inside. The individual who receives the slice with the prize gets good luck in the New Year. In Greece, the New Years celebration is something for the whole family to enjoy with children receiving gifts and money from family and friends.
2. SpainSpanish ring in the New Year by eating 12 grapes at midnight to bring them good luck for each month of the year. They also have to eat each grape as the bell tolls.
3. The PhilippinesFilipinos, round shapes symbolize good luck and prosperity. As they enter the New Year, Filipinos wear polka dots on New Year’s Eve, and many people display round fruits, such as oranges and grape fruits within their homes.
In Brazil, citizens celebrate New Year’s Eve by wearing white to their celebrations. The color white helps distract the evil spirits as they enter the new year.
5. ChileChile, individuals celebrate the New Year by eating a spoonful of lentils in order to secure good luck for the incoming year. They also place money in their shoes as a way provide the next year with prosperity.
For the people living in Denmark, New Year’s Eve is celebrated by breaking and smashing their dishes to show love for their friends and neighbors. They also celebrate New Year’s Eve by jumping off a chair at midnight for good luck.
In Puerto Rico, they celebrate the new year by dumping pails of water out of their window to ward off the evil spirits.
The Russians celebrate New Year’s Eve with a New Year’s tree, and a figure named Ded Moroz (Grandfather Frost), who is similar to Santa. Ded Moroz delivers gifts to the Russian children with his granddaughter, Snegurochka (Snow Maiden).
The Korean New Years celebration, Seollal, takes place this upcoming year, in February. For the Koreans, Seollal is a time to celebrate their ancestors and spend time with their family.
In Germany, they celebrate New Year’s Eve by trying to make predictions for the next year. They celebrate with a tradition called Bleigiessen. This tradition involves melting small chunks of lead with a candle, and due to the low melting point of lead, this is a short process. The melted lead is then poured into a bucket of cold water, where individuals tried to determine the shape of the cooled lead. The shape of the cooled lead determines the year that is coming.