Do you know what Christmas in the Caribbean is like? How do they spend the holidays in Jamaica? What do the Dominicans eat for their Christmas feasts? And why do so many celebrities fly off to St. Barts around this time of year? No matter the season, the Caribbean Islands
remain as vibrant as ever. As such, they're perfect for celebrating what is the most joyful holiday of the year. If you spend Christmas in the Caribbean, you can enjoy a unique holiday feast in Jamaica, sing “Parang” Christmas carols in Trinidad & Tobago, and see the Festival of Lights in St. Lucia! Don't they all sound so fun?
Celebrate for Three Months in The Dominican Republic
Let's start with the Dominican Republic. Why? Because they start the earliest. While most other countries start their holiday celebrations in December (or in the USA's case, November for Thanksgiving
), this Caribbean country starts theirs in October. The autumn month, more famous for the Halloween holiday than Christmas, marks the start of the Dominican Republic's holiday celebrations. They throw parties, soirees, festivals, and more. And all of these festivities continue on until December, culminating in Noche Buena
or Christmas Eve feast. On December 24th, Dominicans wait for the clock to strike 12 and welcome the holiday with lots of food and fireworks.
Party for Nine Mornings Straight in St. Vincent & the Grenadines
If you thought the Dominican Republic's three-month-long festivities were wild, wait until you experience St. Vincent & the Grenadines' Nine Mornings. Just as its name says, the southern dual-island country in the Caribbean parties for nine mornings in a row, starting with December 16th, nine days before the holiday. This holiday tradition consists of all-out celebrations before dawn, complete with loud music, lots of dancing, delicious food, and more. In some communities, they host their parties out on the street, letting everybody join in on the fun. And every party ends just as the sun rises up to start a new day.
Enjoy a Unique Holiday Feast in Jamaica
Although there are many delicious holiday treats from around the world
, the ones from Jamaica are truly something else. As the top party island in the Caribbean
, you'd think their Christmas tradition would consist of a lot of partying like in St. Vincent & the Grenadines. Though Jamaica has its fair share of festivities, it's their holiday menu that truly stands out. On Christmas Day, they serve oxtail, Gungo peas, and curry goat as well as Christmas cake soaked in rum for dessert. Apart from the latter, these aren't exactly what you'd expect for a holiday feast.
Sing Parang in Trinidad & Tobago
Singing Christmas carols door to door is a common holiday tradition
, wouldn't you agree? Lots of countries do it, from the Western nations to the Eastern territories. Simply put, this custom has spread throughout the world. Even Trinidad & Tobago do it, but theirs is fairly different compared to all the others. In this Caribbean country, the “Parang” tradition consists of groups of people singing door to door during the holidays. Sounds like the typical Christmas caroling, doesn't it? Well, the Parang genre itself is far from the usual merry tunes you'd hear in other parts of the world. And of course, Trinidadians have a certain energy that's all their own too!
See The Festival of Lights in St. Lucia
In St. Lucia, the holiday season begins with the “Festival of Lights” on December 13th. But the date doesn't have any significance with Christmas, per se. December 13th is actually the feast day of St. Lucy, patron saint of light as well as that of the Caribbean Island. The country even got its name from her! And to celebrate her special day, the locals deck out their homes, public spaces, and more with the brightest lights ever. The entire island looks like a Christmas wonderland, complete with lanterns they made in an annual lantern-making competition too.
Play in The Sand Yards in The Cayman Islands
The Caribbean is probably the last place you'd expect to have a white Christmas
, didn't you? Well, the Cayman Islands objects. Though they don't have snow at this time of year (or any other time of year, for that matter!), they do have white sand instead. So do their holiday traditions include going to the beach? Surely some do that but not in this case. For Christmas, the Cayman Islands get the white sand from their beloved beaches and use it to decorate their homes. Their properties turn into sand yards, mimicking the white shimmer of a snowy Christmas just like in Europe.
Do you know what Christmas in the Caribbean is like? A whole lot of fun! They have the most exciting holiday traditions in the world, including unique holiday feasts and partying every morning for nine days straight!