New Year's Traditions From Around the World New Year's Eve traditions from around the world.

New Year’s Traditions From Around the World

New Year’s fascinates me.  There is something about people seeking new beginnings and letting go of the past that I find encouraging.  Maybe that is because I am a Christian and I have a deep-seated belief in the power of being born again.  Or maybe it is because I am an optimist who always believes there is a light at the end of the proverbial tunnel.  Regardless of the reason, I love New Year’s, so for some end of year fun I thought I would share some New Year’s traditions from around the world. Does your family observe any of these traditions?

Spain Tradition encourages Spaniards to eat 12 grapes at midnight to secure 12 happy months in the new year. Sounds good to me!

Southern U.S. Eating black-eyed-peas is supposed to bring luck and prosperity in the new year. Many Southerners take their tradition of eating black-eyed-peas on New Year’s quite seriously.  Are you one of them?

Scotland Many Scots practice the tradition of first-footing. This is a practice in which the first person to enter a home after midnight on New Year’s should be a male, with dark hair, who is bearing a gift such as money or food.

Japan In preparation for the new year the week before is spent cleaning the house to get it ready. At midnight, 108 bells ring to symbolize the removal of 108 troubles or weaknesses.  I bet that is something to hear!

Philippines Round shapes (like coins) are seen as lucky and symbolize prosperity for the upcoming year. Because or this, many wear polka dots on New Year’s and place bowls of round fruit on their dining tables.

Denmark In Denmark, some people celebrate the New Year by standing on chairs and  jumping off them together at midnight.  This is seen as leaping into January and is supposed to banish evil spirits and bring good luck.

There are so many interesting and even bizarre traditions around the globe.  What traditions does your family practice? Feel free to leave a comment.  Share and let’s talk about it.

Image: M – Pics /

About Janice

I am so glad you stopped by. Kick your shoes off and hang with me a while. I am an Arizona native, wife to a hard-working hubby, mom of two, and daughter of the King. I love sharing recipes, crafts, and family activities that any mom can do. Life is complicated enough, right? When I am not up to my ears in laundry, dishes, and creating for Celebrating Family, you will also find me at East Valley Mom Guide. Come follow me on Google +, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter.


  1. Karen Greenberg says

    I love learning about other cultures and how people do things. I shared your post in about a million different places. I hope that’s okay. Have a very happy new year!

  2. Wow, I didn’t know most of those traditions. Scotland’s tradition is very odd to me. What if you didn’t know anybody with dark hair??? LOL, thanks for the info.

    • I read it is because the vikings were usually fair haired and they were not usually good visitors if you know what I mean lol.

  3. How fun to see what other cultures do. I love New Years too! It just brings a fresh feeling (maybe it is the new calendar!). The only tradition I am coming close to is cleaning my house. It has been such a zoo lately, I thought I am at least entering the New Year with a clean house! 😉


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