Christmas and New Year’s Traditions of Kos Island

Just like every other place in Greece, Kos Island has some special Christmas and New Year’s Day traditions that add their characteristic charm to this season’s fervor. Some are common nationwide, like the “kalanda”, the Christmas carols that children go door to door singing on Christmas Eve accompanied by the chime of music triangles, or the Christmas lights illuminating the streets, the trees in every home and shop adorned with shiny ornaments. Some might even display a more traditional Greek Christmas decoration, a small boat that symbolizes the Greek island’s rich maritime heritage.

Christmas in Kos means sweet delicacies and mouthwatering treats as well. For Christmas day, custom calls for every housewife to prepare a sweet, buttery bread called “Christopsomo”, the bread of Christ, with the fragrant aroma of cloves, cinnamon, walnuts and orange. Also, an almond biscuit covered in powdered sugar called “kourambies” is probably the most beloved Christmas treat, together with the delicious “melomakarono”, honey cakes that are blamed for the additional weight gained during the season! Another food related custom, the dish that no home in Kos goes without on Christmas Day is the scrumptious “yaprakia” or “dolmadakia”, a bite sized appetizer of rice and ground meat wrapped in vine leaves.

Superstitions are a large part of the Christmas and New Year’s traditions of Kos. On Christmas Eve, unmarried girls gather water from their closest spring or public fountain and – while being utterly silent- bring it back home, as a blessing that will ensure a good marriage for them the following year. Moreover, a bouquet of wheat or hay is hung over the door, to bless the home with affluence and prosperity for the year to come.

Every day of the Christmas season is celebrated with love, joy and hospitality all around the island and everyone, locals and visitors alike are engulfed with the blissful sensation of Christmas. Christmas and New Year’s Eve in Kos is a beautiful time to be around.

For exquisite accommodation in Kos, the 5 star Kos Diamond Deluxe Hotel and Spa is the perfect choice; click for more, and have a Merry Christmas!!!
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