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Start Your Own African Christmas Traditions!

As we approach the holiday season, we often reflect on our customs and Christmas traditions.  Decorating a Christmas tree, hanging stockings on the mantle, and feasting with family and friends.

In many countries throughout Africa, you might be surprised to discover that they share similar holiday traditions, the main difference being that Christmastime is summer holiday time and it’s hot!

Christmas in Kenya

  • In Kenya, families go to midnight mass on Christmas eve. Cypress trees are decorated much like trees are decorated in the United States and families gather together to eat barbecued meats and chapati (flat bread).

Christmas in Uganda

  • Kampala, the capital of Uganda adorns its city streets with twinkling lights. Gifts of food are often exchanged, and holiday meals are enhanced with meats and potatoes.

Christmas in Gambia

  • Gambia, like many other countries celebrates Christmas eve with a church service, followed by a procession featuring music and dance. Gambians also join the parade carrying large lanterns shaped like boats and houses.

Christmas in Botswana

  • Holiday parties in Botswana are eagerly anticipated and often last several days. Christmas dinner includes the national dish, seswaa, a goat or ox meat stew. On December 26th, Botswana continues to celebrate with the sharing of more gifts and family gatherings in honor of Boxing Day.

Christmas in South Africa

  • Every Christmas Eve, South African’s gather together to sing Christmas Carols in the candlelight. Gifts are opened on Christmas morning, followed by a relaxing, festive and abundant Christmas Dinner.

Enjoy a new tradition and celebrate with an African Christmas!