As the New Year rings in, it brings in a new gush of hopes and resolutions while putting curtains on the previous year that encompasses a plethora of memorable moments. Every culture and civilization has its own set of traditions and customs to embrace the new year that promises a better well-being while bidding farewell to the years gone by that leave timeless impressions on our minds and in our souls. So, in this article, we’ll explore some amazing and singular traditions celebrated across the globe and the myths surrounding them in relation to the celebration of the new year.

Denmark

new year's traditions 2018 denmark
One of the craziest traditions during the New Year in Denmark is the smashing of dishes and glasses on the front doors of your friends and relatives. It is believed that more the number of broken pieces in front of your door, more is your popularity and more is the good luck associated with it. Also, jumping off a chair signifies the leap into the new year.

Greece

new year's greece traditions and celebrations 2018
In Greek mythology, pomegranate is symbolic of prosperity and regeneration. The people in Greece, turn off their lights just before midnight and step outside their home which is symbolic of the year that has passed. They then throw the pomegranates against the door to smash it open and it is believed that greater the number of seeds that scatter, more is the amount of prosperity and fortune awaiting in the coming year.

Spain

new year's eve in spain, traditions and celebrations 2018
A very popular way of welcoming New year in Spain is by eating twelve grapes, one for each of the 12 clock chimes at midnight. They have to eat 12 grapes in the span of 12 seconds and make a wish with each grape. The 12 grapes signify the twelve months in the calendar year and in case if you get a particular grape sour, then it represents that particular unlucky month.

Russia

how russians welcome new year 2019
New Year celebration in Russia is somewhat similar to how Christmas is celebrated. They decorate a New Year tree called as ‘Novogodnaya Yolka’. It is decorated with sweets and topped with a star. One popular tradition in Russia is that people write their wish on a piece of paper after which it is burned and its ashes are mixed with champagne before drinking it at the stroke of the midnight.

Germany

germany new year's eve and traditions to follow
There are numerous rituals and traditions associated with Germans while celebrating the new year. One of them includes rubbing chimney ashes on their foreheads while pouring molten lead into cold water and the shape it assumes afterward is an indication of the future that beholds. Picking up five gummy bears sweets from a packet and the color of the sweets will signify the future like red means love while yellow means wealth.

Chile

new year's eve in chile and different ways to celebrate it
One way of celebrating and wishing a good fortune for the New Year in Chile is to eat lentils at the stroke of the midnight. A spine-chilling tradition in Chile is to sleep in the cemetery on the New Year’s eve as a tribute to the deceased loved ones.

Cuba

new year's eve traditions and celebrations in cuba
An interesting tradition in Cuba is to throw away dirty water from the windows on the streets during new year as a gesture to throw away all the bad things in your life and start afresh. One is done with all the bad stuff and is ready to embrace all the good things in the new year that awaits.

Scotland

new year's eve traditions and celebrations scotland
Scottish people celebrate ‘Hogmanay’ which means the last day of the year and is enthusiastically celebrated in the capital where participants hold torches creating a river of fire. The first footing tradition on Hogmanay involves the first person to step into the household from the outside and is supposed to bring to the household fortune and riches in the new year. Usually, a tall and dark-haired person is chosen to set the first foot while a red-headed person is considered unlucky to set the first foot.

Brazil

brazil's new year's eve traditions and new year celebrations
Brazil also boasts of some very peculiar traditions associated with the celebration of the new year. People wear new white undergarments or robes completely white as the color is symbolic with peace. However, it is not mandatory. Another tradition is to jump over 7 different waves while making a wish and this practice is supposed to bring fortunes and believed to make your wishes come true. Also, some Brazilians place flowers in the oceans and this also believed to bring affluence and good luck.

Colombia

new year's eve in colombia
Colombians create a doll-like effigy called as ‘Año Nuevo’ which is stuffed with fireworks. At the beginning of the new year, it is set to fire where its explosion means burning the old year with all the bad stuff associated with it and welcoming the new year with all the zeal. Some Colombians take the suitcase in their hands at the midnight and it means that your entire year will be full of traveling and explorations.

Estonia

new year's eve in estonia and different ways people celebrate it
A heaven for all the gourmets out there, Estonia pushes for a unique way of celebrating the new year by eating a lucky number of meals and when we say lucky, it means seven, nine or 12 meals. It is believed that the number of meals you eat will give the strength of these many men. What could be a better way of relishing the special moments with your loved one when you can eat to your heart’s desire.

Japan

new year's eve in japan and various traditions
Japanese rings temple bells 108 times at the Buddhist temples, an event known as ‘Joya no kane’ which is meant to drive away all negative human emotions. Many Japanese prepare ‘kagami mochi’ which is a chewy rice cake. They also send New year greeting cards known as Nenga to their friends and close ones.

Mexico

wool toy lamb tradition in mexico
A customary practice in Mexico household is to hang a wool toy lamb on your front door. It is believed to bring good luck and riches. Also, eating 12 grapes at the midnight stroke like the way done in Spain, is also a tradition religiously followed by the Mexicans.

Venezuela

yellow undergarments traditions in venezuela
In Venezuela, people follow a bizarre tradition of wearing a bright yellow underwear which can be worn on the outside or no pants at all. Some wear different color underpants and each colour has a different connotation. Example red signifies love, yellow for wealth and white stands for peace.

United States

new year's eve in new york, times square ball drop celebrations
The most vibrant celebrations of the New Year in the US happens at Times Square since 1904 where at the midnight stroke, people kiss their loved ones to bring good fortunes and erase bad memories. The song Auld Lang Syne, which translates to “old long ago” can be heard on the streets. The festivities include welcoming the new year with champagne and eating black eyed peas (as a good luck charm) along with mouth-watering cuisines.

The New Year offers new horizons of improvement, accomplishments, and abundance while the year passed by is a chapter of experiences and remembrance. Every cultural practice followed in any corner of the world is designed to do away with all the vices and bad stuff while looking forward to a new beginning to wellbeing and progress. So, if you happen to be at any of these places across the globe, do enjoy these singular traditions and be a part of it to witness the cultural richness and the myths engulfing them.

Anshika Sehgal is a travelling enthusiast and an avid lover of books and American TV shows.

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