Valentine’s Day is the most celebrated and cherished day of the year. All of us wait for it with open arms so that we can make this Day uber special for our loved ones. Apart from significant festivals, Valentine’s Day is one of the days that the whole world celebrates together. Well, here’s the twist. You might have been thinking till now that the world as a whole celebrates Valentine’s Day on February 14, but it’s incorrect. Let’s see when different countries celebrate Valentine’s Day and how.
How and when is Love celebrated around the world?
Unlike the rest of the world, Argentinians don’t celebrate the Day of love on February 14. They celebrate ‘the week of love’ in July. Yes, you heard it right. They also believe in the same tradition, i.e. celebrating love for a whole week but with a month alteration. Argentinians profess their love to their beloved, exchange gifts, sweets and chocolates and indulge in a week-long confession time.
We all know that Valentine’s Day is celebrated in the memory of Saint Valentine, but did you know that Wales, celebrate Saint Dwynwen, the Welsh patron saint of lovers? It is due to this reason that Welsh people celebrate Valentine’s Day on January 25. Wales has another very sweet tradition related to the celebration of this Day and it is gifting a ‘love spoon’. Welsh men used to carve a wooden spoon with different patterns and symbols and gift it to their beloved. Each carving on the spoon had a different meaning and they all symbolized the keys to a man’s heart.
Brazil also doesn’t celebrate Valentine’s Day on February 14. Brazil witnesses stunning carnivals from February to March every year. It is due to this reason that they skip the celebration of Valentine’s Day in February and celebrate it on June 12 instead. They also have a novel name for this Day, and it is ‘Lovers Day’ or ‘Dia dos Namorados’. Apart from exchanging gifts, chocolates and cards among the couples, gifts are also shared among guests and relatives.
Spain celebrates October 9 as the Day of love and names it as Feast of Saint Dionysus. Apart from giving conventional chocolates and gifts, men gift their women’ Macadora – a marzipan figurine’. These figurines are made in shapes of different animals and are glazed in different colours. They are famous sweet figurines that are famous among Spanish people. It is one of the most essential gifting items that is given to Spanish women to celebrate the Day of love.
Japanese people believe in stretching this Day of love for over a month. Japan has a fascinating tradition behind the celebration of this Day. On February 14, women make the first move. They profess their love to the men by gifting them ‘Honmei-Choco’, homemade chocolate. Once the women had made their first move, it is time for the men to reciprocate, but somehow Japanese are into delayed gratification. On March 14, which is also known as ‘White Day’, Japanese men give white chocolates to the women as a sign of their love and affection.
Valentine’s Day is a popular event in China, but not as popular as ‘Qixi Festival’. Chinese celebrate the Qixi festival on the seventh day of the seventh lunar month of the Chinese calendar, i.e. August 25. In this festival, women traditionally pray to find good husbands as well as excellent sewing skills. This festival is celebrated to remember the love story between Zhinu (weaver girl) and Niulang (a cowherd). As they were banished, they used to reunite once every year on the seventh day of the seventh month.
Slovenians rejoice February 14 as Prime Day for working in the fields. As Saint Valentine is one of the chief patron saints of spring, hence Slovenians don’t celebrate the Day of love on February 14. So, they celebrate the month of love on March 12.
The people in Peru celebrate the Day of love on May 1. Lovers on this Day kiss under cherry trees and wish for each other’s happiness and good health. People of Peru do celebrate February 14, but they believe that professing love under cherry trees tend to make the bond unbreakable.
It is one of the countries that doesn’t believe in celebrating love on the said date. Israelis tend to celebrate the Day of love on August 4. The Jewish people believe in ancient ceremony i.e. Tu B’av. This Day is celebrated as Day of love and rebirth. This Day is ideal for wedding, commitment, renewal of vows, or proposing. As it is a day of romance, it is celebrated throughout Israel by dancing, singing, giving flowers, etc.
Finland and Estonia
Now, here comes the twist. Finland and Estonia celebrate Friend’s Day on February 14 rather than Lovers day. They feel that it is essential to let their friends know that they are loved. Hence, they give gifts, chocolates and cards to their friends. However, it is also a popular day to get engaged in both countries. People in Estonia have a tradition in which single people can take the ride on the Love Bus in the hope of meeting their special one.
Romanians believe in celebrating the Day of love with novelty. They celebrate the Day of love on February 24. Young couples get engaged on this Day. The primary reason for picking up this Day is because Romanians have mixed the Day of love with the onset of the spring season. Hence, on this day, young couples go to the forest to pick up beautiful flowers for their beloved.
So, these are few countries who believe in celebrating the Day of love a bit differently that too spread across the calendar. And why not? Every Day should be marked as Day of love. Happy being in love.