We Travel Lushes love travel and Tina Turner. Our love of Tina led us to Switzerland to see how the Swiss celebrate Christmas. Enjoy the pics and book a trip!
According to Rick Steves, each Christmas Swiss children receive a visit from Samichlaus — that’s Swiss German for St. Nick — and his black-clad henchman, Schmutzli. Visits are traditionally on St. Nicklaus day, Dec. 6, but Switzerland’s dynamic Christmas duo can arrive at any time. Samichlaus knocks on the door and frightened but excited kids answer. Samichlaus consults his big book of sins — co-authored by village parents — and does some light-hearted moralizing. Then he asks the kids to earn a little forgiveness by reciting a poem. After this and some assurances that they will reform, Samichlaus allows the children to reach deep into his bag for a smattering of tangerines, nuts, gingerbread, and other treats.
Singing Christmas Trees
Children’s Choirs become singing Christmas trees spreading cheer throughout city streets, auditoriums and more. Like Elf says, “the best way to spread Christmas cheer is to sing loud for all to hear!”
Advent and Christmas
Advent is the period beginning on the fourth Sunday before Christmas Eve, historically seen as the preparation for the Birth of Christ. Swiss World explains that in the past, these four weeks were used to teach children the virtue of patience – hence the development of the advent calendar, which comprises 24 little flaps opening on to windows depicting scenes from the Nativity. Advent calendars are very much a part of the Swiss Christmas tradition, as is the Advent crown which has four candles, one for each of the Sundays of Advent (on the first Sunday, one candle is burnt, on the second, two are lit, and so on).
Everyone loves to decorate! Christmas decorations can be seen throughout the country. Swiss traditions are similar to ours; they are catered around love and spending time with those closest to you.