They are not that different from the German traditions, but they are something else.
Julkalender – Advent calendar
The Christmas time begins also in Sweden with an Advent calendar.
This tradition originated in Germany and began with a paper calendar.
But today you can also find chocolate calendars, photo calendars and also a Yule calendar on television, which is an event every year and is watched and discussed by all of Sweden.
The Swedish Julbock
Before Santa Claus brought the presents Julbock the gifts to the children. But that was some time ago. And today there is the Julbock only as straw decoration during the Christmas season. You have surely seen it before.
An important part of the Swedish pre-Christmas season is Lucia Day on 13. December. A Sicilian saint, Lucia, brings light into the darkness with her entourage. And there are plenty of them in Sweden at this time of year. Lucia is celebrated not only privately in the family, but also in the community, schools, kindergartens, companies and churches. Especially for this day, there is also a yeast saffron pastry, the Lussekatter.
Kalle Anka – Donald Duck
There is a somewhat different Christmas tradition in Sweden. Because there since 1960 in Swedish television always on the 24. December at 15:00 ca. 60 minutes of a Disney show is shown.
"Kalle Anka och hans vanner onskar God Jul" (Donald Duck and his friends wish Merry Christmas) is the cult at Christmas in Sweden.
Various clips from Disney movies are shown. For the most part it’s always the same sequences, only now and then something is exchanged.
Even though the program is roughly the same every year, everyone watches 2. Swede this show.
Julklappar – Christmas presents
In Sweden, just as in Germany, the presents are also given on the 24th day of the year. December brought by Santa Claus. Either Santa Claus personally comes by, that is, someone who has been hired to take over this role&, or the gifts are also placed under the Christmas tree.
On the day before Christmas Eve, the gifts are all beautifully wrapped and small rhymes are made up, which are attached to the gifts on slips of paper. These rhymes give little hints of what might be in the gift. Thus the unwrapping of the gifts becomes then also still another large guess round, where everyone can participate.
Julgran – Christmas tree
Like the Advent calendar, the tradition of the Christmas tree also comes from Germany. The decoration has changed over time since the 15. Century changed a bit. At first, homemade or imported decorations from Germany were hung on the tree, but later the tree was decorated with Swedish flags. Nowadays, however, baubles and glitter are also hung in the Swedish Christmas tree next to the lights.
And on 13. January, 20 days after Christmas, the tree is then thrown out. This is also celebrated. If there is enough space, there is dancing around the Christmas tree, games are played and the Christmas tree is plundered. Especially for the children great, because then many sweets fall off.
The Julbord offers so much choice that there is even an order for the many delicacies.
Julbord – Christmas buffet
And what do the Swedes eat for Christmas?? Because this is also a very important point on the holidays. In Sweden there is usually a richly filled buffet that leaves nothing to be desired. This is Julbord, so Christmas table, called.
Since there are so many dishes, there is even an order in which the dishes are to be eaten. First to stand cold dishes on the plan as for example different kinds of pickled herring, herring salad, salmon, aspic, spice bread and crispbread with butter and cheese.
After that then come Warm delicacies like the Christmas ham, Janssons Frestelse, princess sausages, kottbullar, cabbage (as brown cabbage, green cabbage or red cabbage, depending on the region and family tradition) and ribs on the plate. As Dessert is usually served rice pudding or ris à la Malta. Of course may also Christmas sweets like Knack not missing.
To drink there is also something: beer, Glogg or the Swedish Julmust. A lemonade drink that contains malt and is only available at Christmas and Easter.
Ah yes, the small Nightcap in between may not be missing of course.
I hope I could introduce you a little bit to the Swedish Christmas traditions.