Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Celebrating the Significance of Christmas

Christmas is a holiday celebrated in various ways around the globe. It is the season for giving and receiving gifts, gathering of families and relatives and the most enjoyable part – feasting. The spirit of Christmas can be seen and heard everywhere, from the lights of different colours adorning the trees to the Christmas carols being played all day long.

However for those who are devout Catholics who celebrate this festive season with reverence, the highlight of this occasion will be attending mass especially the one held on the midnight of 24th December. These traditional customs for celebrating “Divine Christmas” are more pronounced in the following countries known for having fabulous celebration:

Where could be the better place to celebrate Christmas than in a place where it all begun. Bethlehem and Jerusalem signifies the origin and the importance of the yuletide season. Perhaps Christmas celebration in this place will be the only thing that can surpass the magnitude and intensity of the celebration in the Vatican City. A lot of devout Catholics even go to Vatican just to celebrate Christmas. The mass on the eve of Christmas officiated by no less than the Pope himself at the St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome attracts a huge crowd of followers every year.

The city of Cologne glows with life during the month of December. During this month, seven Christmas Markets light up the old town and the square in front of “The Dom” – a cathedral in cologne famous for its spectacular Gothic architecture. Truly, it is a perfect destination for tourists for shopping and feasting.

Spending Christmas in Copenhagen need not be expensive with numerous online travel companies offering cheap airfare to Europe. Get a chance to treat your palate with the Julefrokost – a Danish Christmas lunch feast served on the 24th of December and have a taste of Glogg and Aebleskiver – a seasonal drink of warm red wine with raisins and spices.

Experience Christmas like nowhere else at Tbilisi , the capital of Georgia. Christmas celebration in this part of Europe is full of Orthodox traditions. Parts of these inherent customs are native sweets, spirits, foods and typical carols not heard anywhere else outside the country.
Situated on the Franco-German border, Strasbourg represents the best of both French and German culture with its cuisine, excellent wines and jovial nature. The town is at its best during the Christmas season as it transforms into a winter wonderland midst a snowy background. Tourist attractions such as the Christmas Market, the great Christmas Tree at the central Strasbourg, the charming neighborhood of La Petite France famous for its gingerbread and the mass held at the Cathedral of Our Lady will definitely make your holiday exciting.

Distinctly Irish – that’s what a Christmas celebration in Dublin can be described. With traditional Celtic music, Christmas ham and goose on the table, lighted candles in every window, festive spirit is felt everywhere.

Spending for an airfare to London to
celebrate Christmas became a yearly practice for those who had been captivated by the charm of this city during the festive season. Attending the famous mass at the Westminster Abbey complete with the angelic voice of the choir had been an annual activity. Probably London has the most fabulous array of midnight masses in all Christendom. In fact the midnight mass at the St. Paul’s Cathedral hosts a record high of more than 2,000 people in attendance.

Being one of the two pre-dominantly Catholic countries in Asia, Philippines celebrate Christmas as one of the biggest holiday in the archipelago. This country earned the distinction of celebrating Christmas for the longest period, starting from the month of September until early January. One of the traditions is attending the nine-day dawn and night masses before the Christmas Day called Simbang Gabi to obtain special graces.

Christmas is also a major holiday in Brazil making Rio De Janeiro the perfect place to celebrate the yuletide season. The famous landmark Christ the Redeemer which can be seen anywhere acts as a reminder for everyone about the significance of Christmas. One of the main attractions for tourist is the “Christmas Festival” which features 50 nativity scenes displayed all over the town. Mass on the eve of Christmas is also a major part of the celebration which attracts a crowd of followers every year.

Celebrating Christmas in other parts of the world can be an exciting and enriching experience. You can learn more about the other country’s tradition and customs, widening your knowledge and understanding of other races. Travelling to other country to spend the holidays is more affordable, now that countless online travel companies compete with each other offering the cheapest airline ticket to the consumers. Christmas comes every year so there will always be next year to execute your travel plans!

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