Fundoo Times
Christmas in Denmark is celebrated with fun and enthusiasm. Read this article to know more about the celebration of Christmas in Denmark.

Christmas in Denmark

Christmas in Denmark is celebrated with fun and great enthusiasm. The holiday season of Christmas is, in fact, the longest and the most popular in the country. As the holiday season approaches, the days become shorter. The glowing Christmas lights in the streets and houses dispel the gloom of the never-ending twilight of winter. There are only few hours of dim light during winter in Denmark. Hence, lighted candles are found everywhere during Christmas in Denmark. Schools, homes and churches burn innumerous candles to steer clear the darkness. In Denmark, the practice of lighting candles is, in fact, an old tradition, which is much older than Christmas. Denmark is one of the few countries in the world where Christmas is celebrated with such a burst of light. Read on to know more about the customs for celebration of Christmas in Denmark.

Advent, the fourth Sunday before Christmas, is an important day during Christmas celebrations in Denmark. Special services are conducted in Danish churches to celebrate Advent. A beautiful Advent wreath made of evergreen boughs holding four tall red or white Advent candles is hung above or placed as the centerpiece in Danish households to celebrate Advent. The beginning of Christmas celebrations in Denmark is marked by lighting an Advent wreath candle on the first Sunday of Advent. One more candle is lit on the second Sunday of Advent, together with the first candle and on the following Sunday, the third Advent candle is lit. All the four candles are lit together on the last Sunday before Christmas.

Most of the Danish families put out their Christmas or Advent calendars on the first of December. There is something unique about the Advent calendars- it is the presence of small doors or windows on the calendar. The countdown for Christmas in Denmark begins on the first of December. Each day before Christmas is counted by opening one of the 24 numbered windows or doors present in the Advent calendar. Behind each door/window on the calendar, there is a treasured symbol of the holiday season such as toys, candles, cookies and so on. These Advent calendars either are purchased from the stores or are homemade. Homemade advent calendars include hooks in place of windows or doors. The tiny packages hung from each hook are unwrapped on each of the 24 days before Christmas. These tiny packages often contain small Christmas gifts such as toys, candies, or wrapped chocolates.

Sharing of holiday cheers with family, friends and neighbors and exchange of Christmas gifts with them is an important aspect of celebration of Christmas in Denmark. The Danish believe that a Christmas visitor who leaves the house without being fed may carry away the Christmas spirit. Hence, the visitors during Christmas in Denmark are given sumptuous treats of freshly baked Christmas goodies and the family's good cheers are shared with them. The Danish women are busy all the time in kitchen during the Christmas season. The kitchen in every Danish household buzzes with activities of cooking and is filled with the aroma of sweets, spices in the weeks before Christmas.

Christmas Eve is called as 'Juleaften' in Denmark. It is an important day during the festive season of Christmas in Denmark. In fact, Christmas Eve is the busiest day in the country. Christmas Eve is generally a private affair in Denmark. It is a get together of family members, close relatives and friends and grand parents. On Christmas Eve, the Christmas tree is decorated, the Christmas gifts are wrapped, and every household is tidied up. The parents in Danish households decorate the Christmas tree beautifully, with bright papers, homemade wooden and straw ornaments. A huge pile of Christmas gifts is left beneath the Christmas tree and the gifts are exchanged with all the family members and close friends. The Christmas tree is lit up before the dinner when they sing carols and hymns.

The Christmas feast is in the midnight of Christmas Eve. Danish enjoy partying all through the night before Christmas. Traditional prune-stuffed roast goose, fried pastries, red cabbage, and cinnamon-laced rice pudding called Grod are served in the Christmas feast. December 25 and December 26 are holidays in Denmark. They are called as Christmas Day and Second Christmas Day. Both these days are celebrated with fun and fervor, with family and friends. The holiday season of Christmas in Denmark is a time for social get together, great fun and feasting!