Thursday, 18 June 2015

Six Celebrations of Father’s Day

Father’s Day is a much-loved tradition around the world celebrating the father figure, and often involves the giving of cards and presents on a particular day.  However, certain countries have more specific customs and traditions that take place on Father’s Day.  Here’s six ways of celebrating Father’s Day wherever you are.

The UK

Father’s Day in the UK is coming up this Sunday 21st June.  Occurring on the same day as Summer Solstice, some historians believe that Father’s Day in the UK originated from the Pagan worshipping of the Sun.  The event is traditionally celebrated with the quintessential British meal – the Sunday roast, which is usually eaten in a local pub or at home.  Typical Father’s Day gifts given in the UK are stereotypical ‘Dad’ presents – ties, socks and mugs!

Image Source: Creative Commons / Wikipedia

In Thailand, the date of Father’s Day is determined by the monarchy – the birthday of the present king is also the day on which Father’s Day is celebrated.  Currently, this is December 5th.  Some Thai families also light a white candle on Father’s Day in respect of the King of Thailand.  As a colour which symbolises masculinity in Thailand, yellow is worn by children and grandchildren on Father’s Day, and Canna flowers (which are considered to be masculine) are presented as gifts.  

Image Source: Creative Commons / Wikimedia

As with many other Christian countries, Father’s Day in Spain is celebrated on St Joseph’s Day.  Like most other celebrations in Spain, Father’s Day is marked by a huge feast of traditional Spanish cuisine and lots of dancing.  With this, the Las Fallas festival takes place in Valencia at the same time as Father’s Day (to celebrate St Joseph’s Day), which brings communities onto the streets of Valencia for displays of gunpowder explosions and late-night dancing.   


In Germany, Father’s Day, or ‘Vatertag’, is celebrated on a Thursday around a month after Easter, and follows the tradition of ‘Männertag’ (Man’s Day), which dates back to the middle ages.  Historically, this day was celebrated by a male only hike, which was enjoyed along with wagons filled of traditional German foods, beer and wine.  In modern times, German men take over beer gardens in and around the city, and go on long afternoon walks with their children.  

Image Source: Creative Commons / Wikimedia

Like most other countries, Father’s Day is celebrated in Mexico with a feast of traditional cuisine.  However, if you are in Mexico City on Father’s Day, you will be expected to take part in a city-wide 21 kilometre race in the local national park, Bosque de Tlalpan!

New Zealand

In New Zealand, Father’s Day is celebrated on the first Sunday in September annually.  In New Zealand, spending quality time with your father is the most important thing, regardless of the activity.  However, adventure sports and picnics are among the most popular activities with New Zealand’s outdoor-loving inhabitants – a failsafe way to celebrate with the whole family

For those expats spending Father’s Day away from home, here’s some advice on keeping in touch with loved ones overseas.   

1 comment:

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