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French Holiday Traditions Around the World

We all celebrate the holidays differently. Even across Canada, every family has their own unique traditions that are passed down and shifted slightly from generation to generation. Often, however, we share some common themes that resonate across the nation. For instance, Canadian Christmases often include turkey, a Christmas tree, presents on Christmas morning, and tales of Santa and his reindeer. But while common language histories can encourage some common behaviours, French holiday traditions around the globe aren’t necessarily all the same.


We thought it might be fun to take a look at just a couple French-speaking countries around the world and what their festive traditions look like.


France Christmas Traditions

Let’s start with the most well-known French-speaking nation - France!


There’s some crossover; traditions that will look familiar to those of us in Canada. For instance, children enjoy advent calendars and there are nativity scenes in French homes. Their nativity scenes, however, often have many more figures than just those present in the manger. These are displayed until February 2, exactly 40 days after Christmas.