Valentine's Day Around the World
How do you tell another person “I love you?” It seems like an easy thing to do, but it can be incredibly difficult. You can directly say it using those 3 magic words, but 3 words seems a little minimal. Maybe a greeting card is the answer, the perfect pairing of picture and poetry to express heartfelt sentiment…and yet it falls flat. You could spend a few bucks and take your significant other out to a fancy dinner to wine and dine them. This will certainly make them happy and full, but does that say love? What about chocolate? I love chocolate. And I love celebrating love with chocolate. I will gladly take any excuse to eat chocolate. But is there love in candy? Perhaps. In the end, there is no wrong way to say I love you. Love is a wonderful thing to express and to celebrate. There are many different ways to express love and affection. All over the world, different cultures have their own traditions and unique holidays all centered around love.
Ever get a card that or message that really made you smile? Valentine’s Day or Valentinsdag is celebrated in Denmark through the sending of letters. Couples write love notes and funny messages to each other. These are typically handwritten and are often penned on self-cut paper snowflakes. The flower of choice to send in Denmark are white flowers known as snowdrops.
In Romania, love and spring are celebrated on the 24 th of February on a holiday known as Dragobete Day. The name comes from a pagan myth. Dragobete is a cupid like character known as the guardian of love. The holiday is associated with birds because it is around this time of year that birds in Romania are seen building their nests.
3) South Korea
In South Korea, gift giving for Valentine’s Day is a little bit one-sided. Women show their affection to men by giving them chocolates. However, Valentine’s Day is just one of three major love themed holidays celebrated in South Korea. White Day, a holiday that originally comes from Japan is celebrated exactly one month after Valentine’s day and this time, men give the gifts. One month after that, Black Day is a time for single people to get together.
Valentine’s day is celebrated in Argentina in February, but they also celebrate “Sweetness Week” in July. Imagine an entire week dedicated to love that is filled with sweets and kisses. After a full week of sweetness comes Friend’s Day. Although not considered a public holiday in Argentina, it is festive day to get together with friends and exchange gifts.
Western influence has led many Chinese to celebrate Valentine’s day, but China has its own love celebration known as the Qixi Festival. The festival is centered around an old story of tragic love between a fairy and a mortal. Each lover is represented by a star in separate parts of the Milky Way galaxy. Once a year, during the festival is the time that it said that the lovers get the chance to see each other.
The Welsh equivalent of Valentine’s Day is St Dwynwen’s Day and falls on January 25 each year. Dwynwen is the Welsh patron saint of lovers. She is no longer recognized by the Vatican as an official saint, but dinners and parties are still held throughout Wales in her honor. Love spoons are traditionally exchanged on St Dwynwen’s Day between lovers, friends, and family.
No matter where you live, there are always ways to celebrate love and kinship. Feel free to try out some of these unique ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day for yourself or come up with your own traditions. Happy Valentine’s Day!
Marc | Copywriter