3 Things that Make Greek Christmas So Special

“It’s not what’s under the tree that matters. It’s who’s gathered around it.” As a matter of fact, celebrating Xmas dates back over 4000 years. Can you imagine?! Today Greeks welcome the long-awaited Christmas holiday on 25th of December. Here’s 3 things that make Greek Christmas so special (not only for the natives):
  1. Religion and Christmas spirit
To be honest, the religion is a vital element of Greek culture and that’s why people are so passionate about the Christmas holidays. Most Greeks are highly religious and they put much effort in the holiday’s preparation. Xmas in Greece means good mood, lots of decorations all over the buildings and inside the homes and, last but not least, many special Christmas sweets.
  1. Traditions
Ever heard of Xristoksilo /Χριστόξυλο/? Well, in the evening before Christmas, New Year and St. Jordan’s Day Greeks go out in the woods to search for a spruce. When they find it, they cut it down and bring it home. They name this tree “Christ’s wood” and people use it as a heating source during the holidays. Another interesting tradition is when people clean the fireplace on Christmas Eve. This “ritual” is said to send all bad spirits and demons away of the house. So, the evening before Christmas the whole family gathers around the fire and the oldest person lights up the Christ’s wood.
  1. Food
We can talk a lot about Greek food and Christmas! All the things they tend to eat during these winter holidays are simply amazing. The very famous vine leaves symbolize Christ being wrapped in diapers. What you can also find on a Christmas table are Christ’s bread /χριστόψωμο/, avgolemono (chicken & rice soup), chestnuts, raisins and lots of other tasty stuff. Hey, let’s not forget about the sweets! Greek housewives are true chefs when it comes to baking Christmas desserts. Some of the most famous ones are melomakarona, kourampiedes and baklava. Read this article to learn more about Christmas food traditions in Greece. melomakarona and kourampiedes By the way, most Greek families usually have a tradition to give Christmas hampers full of delicacies to their neighbors, relatives and friends. Don’t forget to buy your Christmas hamper and lots of other holiday stuff as you click here!


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