How does France celebrate Christmas?

Many people in France put up a Christmas tree, visit a special church service, eat an elaborate meal and open gifts on Christmas Eve. Other activities include swimming in a park, participating in city life and sharing a meal with family and close friends.

What are the Christmas traditions for France?

Some French Christmas Traditions
  • Advent calendars – les calendriers de l'Avent. ...
  • Postcards from Père Noël. ...
  • The nativity scene. ...
  • La Chandeleur. ...
  • Le Réveillon de Noël. ...
  • Père Fouettard. ...
  • Shoes by the Fire. ...
  • Christmas Dinner.


What is the most popular Christmas tradition in France?

The evening of December 24th is when French families sit down together to celebrate Christmas and enjoy festive French foods and wines. If you've heard about French people eating long and slowly, this dinner is the greatest example of this French custom. The meal can go for up to six hours.


What is Santa called in France?

Santa Claus is called Père Noël in French or Father Christmas. Small children may also call him Papa Noël or Daddy Christmas.

What does Santa look like in France?

Le Père Noël: Santa Claus in French

In France, all children are familiar with this version of Santa, who wears a red suit and travels by reindeer delivering gifts on Christmas Eve.


How do French People Celebrate Christmas?



Do French have Christmas trees?

However, most French households have their French Christmas tree set up by about 15 December and street decorations are usually up from the first Sunday of Advent.

What are French traditions?

Holidays and celebrations

The French celebrate the traditional Christian holidays of Christmas and Easter. They mark May Day, also known as Labor Day, on May 1. Victory in Europe Day on May 8 commemorates the end of hostilities in Europe in World War II. Bastille Day is celebrated on July 14.

Does France give gifts on Christmas?

In many countries, families gather and give gifts on Christmas Day. But French people tend to exchange gifts on the night of Christmas Eve (le réveillon (de Noël)), rather than on Christmas Day (Noël/le jour de Noël), although kids do often get their presents from le Pere Noël on Christmas morning.

How long does Christmas last in France?

It is a four-day festival taking place around the 8 December. Why does it take place at this time? In France, the 8 December is a celebration in honour of the Virgin Mary - la Vierge Marie.


What do French eat at Christmas?

The dishes that make a real French Christmas feast
  • CAVIAR. ...
  • OYSTERS. ...
  • LOBSTER. ...
  • FOIE GRAS. ...
  • ESCARGOTS. ...
  • COQUILLES SAINT JACQUES. ...
  • ROAST TURKEY WITH CHESTNUT STUFFING. ...
  • ALL KINDS OF BIRDS AND WILD FOWL.


Do the French do Secret Santa?

5) Secret Santa is the only dignified gift-giving game

France enjoys a respectable game of Secret Santa. It's quiet, planned, and the outcome is predictable.

How are holidays celebrated in France?

Many of France's national holidays are rooted in the Catholic Church's calendar, and Assumption Day, celebrated annually on August 15, is one of them. Parades, fireworks, and bonfires are held throughout the country commemorating the end of summer.

What gifts do they give in France?

The most commonly gifted items to a host are flowers, chocolates, or liqueur in French culture. Whichever you choose, make sure that it is a high-quality item. Giving something cheap is considered an insult. If you choose to give flowers, the type of flowers you choose will say a lot.


What is the most important holiday in France?

Celebrated on July, 14, Bastille Day is the French national day and the most important bank holiday in France! Setting the storming of the Bastille in 1789 as an essential part of the French History. The 14th July has become a major public holiday, traditionally considered as the symbol of the French Revolution.

How do the French say Merry Christmas?

1 – How To Say Merry Christmas in French

The most common way of wishing merry Christmas in French is to say “joyeux Noël !”.

Do the French send Christmas cards?

Christmas cards are not so common in France, people and companies will send a card saying « Bonne année » rather than « Joyeux Noël ». But both they are called cartes de voeux.

What are some fun facts about Christmas in France?

10 Facts about Christmas in France
  • The traditional Christmas meal eaten on Christmas Eve can last up to 6 hours. ...
  • Some French people enjoy 13 desserts after their main meal. ...
  • The Eve of St. ...
  • Saint Nicholas has a helper who decides who's been naughty and nice. ...
  • Many families go to the circus around Christmas.


What should you not gift in France?

Gift Giving Don't in France

Avoid white flowers in general, as they are for weddings and yellow flowers as they signal infidelity. Don't bring wine if you are invited into a home, as they would likely prefer to choose the wine. Avoid a bouquet of 13 flowers.

Who brings gifts on Christmas in France?

Père Noël. Père Noël (French pronunciation: ​[pɛʁ nɔ. ɛl]), "Father Christmas", sometimes called Papa Noël ("Father Christmas"), is a legendary gift-bringer at Christmas in France and other French-speaking areas, identified with the Father Christmas or Santa Claus of English-speaking territories.

How is winter celebrated in France?

Throughout the Christmas season, Christmas trees and nativity scenes can be found in France. Although le sapin de noël is more of a German tradition, the first French Christmas tree was in Strasbourg in1605. Parisian store fronts are also well known for their elaborate Christmas trees.

What do French kids leave for Santa?

In France, children leave out carrots and cookies in their shoes. The French make sure Santa Claus isn't hungry by leaving him treats — like biscuits — as well as carrots for the reindeer. They typically leave the goodies in their shoes and awake to find the food gone and presents in their place.


Do the French hang stockings at Christmas?

Traditionally, we don't hang stockings on the fireplace around Christmas time in France. However, it's not a very respected tradition. Nowadays, the numerous Christmas gifts are usually placed under the Christmas tree, or next to it.

What do the French call the 24th of December?

1 – Le Réveillon de Noël – the Traditional French Christmas Eve Meal – December 24th. It all starts with what the French call “le Réveillon” (from the French reflexive verb “se réveiller” – to wake up) because people stayed up to go to the late Christmas mass.

What are the 13 desserts of Christmas in France?

The Thirteen Desserts
  • Dates (perhaps stuffed with marzipan) representing the foods of the region where Christ lived and died.
  • Dried plums from Brignoles.
  • Calisson d'aix en Provence – a marzipan-like candy made from almond paste and candied melon.
  • Quince fruit paste or jam.
  • Candied melons.
  • Casse-dents of Allauch – a biscuit.
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