When we think of Christmas, we picture chestnuts roasting on an open fire, the landscaped covered in freshly fallen snow, and a jolly fat man in red bringing joy to children. Not for these countries. From KFC to all out fist fights, these countries have a different way of celebrating Christmas.
Here are 10 of the craziest holiday traditions.
Takanakuy In Peru
A small province near Cuzco started a fight club tradition on December 25th.
It was originally designed to settle legal disputes. The villagers wrap their fists and begin beating each other up. Men, women and even children participate in the scrap. Just imagine Black Friday at a Wal-Mart, but there’s nothing to buy and everybody hates each other. The local police are on standby to make sure things don’t get too crazy.
Spain Takes A Dump On Christmas
A man pooping is a symbol of good luck for farmers.
A caganer is a man in the midst of taking a poop. Folklore says that farmers would be punished with a bad harvest if they didn’t include this in their nativity scene. They have everything from Barack Obama to the Pope as a caganer. Just isn’t a party unless someone is popping a squat in public.
Krampus in Austria
The new movie is actually connected to Austrian folklore.
Krampus is a hairy creature that unleashes punishment on those who were on Santa’s naughty list.
Japan Loves KFC
There is a special recipe for fried chicken on Christmas.
People have to order two months in advance to get KFC in order to have their holiday dinner, courtesy of Colonel Sanders chicken. Looks like someone did some awesome marketing back in the day to make Japan crazy over fried chicken on Christmas.
Australia Has A Beach Party
Christmas falls in the middle of Australia’s summer.
To be the summer heat, they don’t even try to do a white Christmas, and head to the beach to cool down and enjoy a lovely summer of swimming, picnics, and volleyball.
Guatemala’s La Quema Del Diablo
Guatemalans begin saving up all their trash for the month of December to light it.
From December 7th until Christmas, they collect whatever trash and throw it into one big pile. They place an effigy of the devil and set it on fire. It is said to purge evil spirits and negative energy.
Finland Visits Their Ancestors
Finlanders must visit their departed at sunset on Christmas Eve.
It was originally a custom after World War I soldiers had passed away.
Mexico’s Flores De Noche Buena
The poinsettia connected to a Mexican legend.
A poor brother and sister left weedy branches as a gift to Christ Child at a church. The richer children laughed at their meager gift, but a cluster of red star-shaped flowers bloomed from the branches. Thus, the Flores de Noche Buena (Flowers of the Holy Night) began in Mexico, which is why poinsettias are connected to Christmas.
Befana’s A Nice Witch In Italy
Instead of a jolly old man, you have a kind old witch named Befana delivering gifts.
On January 5th, parents leave out plates of food for Befana. She does everything that Santa does, the toys, going into chimneys, travels around the entire world but on a broomstick.January morning children wake up to see their stocking stuffed with gifts and toys awaiting them.
Wales Has Horsey Tradition
A horse skull attached to a wood pole is covered in a blanket or sheet.
Mari Lwyd is a Grey Mare, who comes with five or six revelers who knock on doors and said to bring good luck.