Christmas Traditions in Denmark

Christmas in Denmark is celebrated much the same as it is in the United States. There are some differences that we will show below. One major difference is that Advent is a major celebration in Denmark. Here is how the country celebrates.

Decorations – Advent wreaths and advent calendars are a major portion of the celebration. With advent being such a significant part of the season, most people have these items in their homes. The television station that produces the Julekalendar usually produces advent calendars so viewers can follow along.

Food – Goose, pork or duck is served at the Christmas Eve dinner.

Christmas Eve – Church services take place around 4:00PM on Christmas Eve, as opposed to the traditional midnight mass in many other countries. Afterwards, everyone gathers and eats dinner.

Traditions – Christmas cards are sent, but most of the accompanying parts of the tradition, i.e. the purchase of stamps and the cards themselves, see the money donated to charity. Christmas parties are also a big event, starting about a month before the holiday. Christmas carols are sung around the tree on Christmas Eve.

Santa – Julemanden, or Christmas Man, is the gift giver of choice for Danish children. He shares all the same characteristics of Santa.

Media – Denmark has a very specific type of television program called a Julekalendar, which means Christmas Calendar. It is aired once a night for the 24 days leading up to Christmas. The setup is always that a villain is trying to ruin Christmas, and a hero saves the holiday.

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