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Thessalonica is prepared for Christmas - Greek Tradition

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Thessalonica is prepared for Christmas - Tradition in Greece

Christmas is celebrated very traditionally in Greece, this we had heard already, and because of that were very surprised by the action of the young girls in the street art project Free Hugs in Alexandroupolis.

Very modern and not really traditional. In Greece, children are in the first place of different customs in the respective places during the period between December 24th and January 6th.

This time we only had time for a very short stopover to Thessalonica, but we used the time for a short city stroll around to see the Christmas decorations and the sea of lights. We should come across unexpected surprises of decorations.

What is different from many Christian countries in Greece is, that the Orthodox Christmas season extends from 24th of December to 6th of January. During this time two days are especially important for Greek children: Christmas Eve and New Year. On these two evenings the children move from house to house and sing - accompanied by drums, bells and triangles - the so-called "Kalanda". On Christmas Eve they announce the birth of Christ, bless the houses and bring happiness to the inhabitants.

As a thank you, they receive gifts, in the form of fruit, sweets or "Christopsomo", a traditional Christmas biscuit. Nowadays they are often given money. Who enters the house first, plays an important role on this day, because this person receives most gifts.

The 25th of December is a holiday in Greece and for the Orthodox Christians the end of the pre-Christmas 40-day fasting, which is, why friends and relatives come together to enjoy a meal together. Stuffed turkey is one of the most popular Christmas meals, but as in most countries, other dishes are also served depending on the region or family.

Other culinary specialties that are served in Greece during the Christmas season are so-called "Melomakarona", for which we have received a recipe, the "result" which particularly we liked very much. The delicious almond cookies are part of the traditional Christmas biscuits.

We concluded our visit to Thessalonica with a delicious pre-Christmas dinner, as can be seen in the picture. The well-known city district of Ladadika is an ideal place for local delicacies.

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