6 New Year's Eve Traditions From Around the World To Try This Year

6 New Year's Eve Traditions From Around the World To Try This Year

by Katherine Parker-Magyar


To continue with our global approach to holiday festivities, here are the top six traditions from around the world that we think you should incorporate into your celebrations on December 31st. (New Year's Eve is also the birthday of yours truly, so I'm particularly passionate about this topic). Though the cemetery sleepover in Chile may be a bit beyond the pale for many, the yellow underwear favored by Venezuelans and the cathartic dish-smashing preferred by the Danes is surely appealing to the rest of us. 

Read on for some inspiration:





Smashing dishes

The Danes keep their chipped plates and glasses and various assortment of kitchen wares for the entire year, waiting for the celebratory moment on New Year's Eve when they smash the dishes on the front steps of their best friends' homes. This is a tradition we can wholeheartedly get behind.

chile cemetery.jpg



Cemetery sleepovers

Talk about the nightmare before Christmas (ahem: New Year's). In the small town of Talca, Chile, it's tradition to spend the night in a cemetery on the last day of the year. They believe their deceased loved ones are waiting for them there, and the living have made a ritual of spending the evening together with the dead. And you thought your family loved you.




Sleeping in yellow underwear


Venezuelans believe sleeping in yellow underwear on New Year's Eve will bring good luck in the New Year. I'm still forgetting to say Rabbit Rabbit on the 1st of the month, so I'm not in a position to judge. Seems like an easy way to up your chances for a good year. No word on whether fortune favors boxers or briefs, however.




Eating twelve grapes

This superstition, rumored to bring good luck in the New Year, is brought to us by the Spaniards. The tradition is to eat 12 grapes in 12 seconds at midnight, which seems marginally more feasible than the yellow underwear proposition.




Tossing buckets of water


Cubans toss buckets of water outside their front door on New Year's Eve, washing away the bad energy and giving the New Year a fresh start. Though you'd probably be better off drinking all that H2O at midnight (better to cleanse your impending hangover), this seems like another easy way to up your luck. We're in.