Here's How Valentine's Day Is Celebrated Around the World
Dating back to 5th century ancient Rome, Valentine’s Day is still today one of the most popular holidays. In fact, according to the Greeting Card Association, 145 million Valentine’s Day cards are sent each year in the U.S. alone, making it the largest card-sending holiday after Christmas. But not all couples around the world celebrate the holiday by sending cards, buying chocolate, and giving their significant others gifts. Traditions for this romantic holiday vary greatly from country to country…
In Argentina, Valentine’s Day is celebrated over the course of an entire week called "Semana de la Dulzura" or “the week of sweetness”. Couples celebrate from the 1st to the 7th of July, exchanging chocolate and other sweet treats along with one kiss per treat.
On February 14th, Bulgarians celebrate Winemakers Day, where couples celebrate their love for one another over a glass of local wine.
Why celebrate only 1 day a year? Couples in South Korea celebrate the day of love on the 14th of each month. The day of love can be themed such as May 14th is “the day of roses," June 14th “the day of kisses," and December 14th "the day of hugs." Alternatively, on April 14th, single people celebrate "the black day" by going out to eat black noodles.
In South Africa, women will pin their significant other’s name on their sleeves to publicly declare their love. This is also done by women hoping to get their crushes' attention! Although very rare, men also follow this tradition.
In Miao, South West China, women cook various dishes of colored rice, which they offer to male suitors. Hidden inside the rice, the women place different objects to send a message. Think parsley, indicating love and a desire to get married to the man, or a clove of garlic, indicating a desire to end the relationship.
In Wales, couples celebrate their own version of Valentine’s Day, called "the day of San Dwynwen," on January 25th. Since the 16th century, the tradition for lovers has been to gift each other beautiful handcrafted wooden spoons on this romantic day.
On Valentine's Day, instead of celebrating romantic love Estonia celebrates love for all, on a day known as "Sobrapaev." Think friendship day instead, because this holiday involves celebrating love for not only one's significant other, but family members and friends too.
Japanese couples celebrates Valentine's Day in a very unique way. On the 14th of February women buy their husbands or boyfriends a variety of gifts and sweet treats. The twist is that men can’t return the thought and give women gifts back until March 14, which the Japanese call “the white day”!