21 Birthday Traditions Around The World

piniata birthday tradition
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Birthdays have been celebrated as far back as the Ancient Egyptian celebrations for Pharaohs, but it was the Romans who first introduced the idea of celebrating family and friends’ birthdays. We’re taking a look at 21 fun birthday traditions that have developed all over the world.

1. Australian Fairy Bread

fairy bread birthday traditions

Courtesy of wearevisionists via Instagram

At Australian and New Zealand birthday parties you’ll be sure to find fairy bread- an interesting concoction of white bread, butter and hundreds and thousands!

2. Vietnamese Birthdays

In Vietnam it is traditional to celebrate your birthday on the Vietnamese New Year’s Day, known as Tet, with everyone else. This massive celebration does include presents in the form of red envelopes filled with money for kids.

3. Nepalese Birthday Traditions

In Nepal it is traditional to smear the forehead of the birthday-haver with coloured yoghurt. Children also have their head shaved while being held by a special fire on their first birthday.

4. Smash Cakes

smash cake birthday tradition

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In the US it is very popular to have a smash cake at babies’ birthday parties. The birthday girl or boy is invited to literally smash up the cake and eat it.

5. Los Mañanitas song in Mexico

piniata birthday tradition

Courtesy of sugarbutterlove via Instagram

In Mexico, aside from having a colourful piniata filled with sweets, it is also traditional to sing the birthday song “los Mañanitas” to the person celebrating their birthday.

6. Ghanaian birthday breakfast food

Children in Ghana wake up to a special treat of oto on their birthday. This is a patty made from mashed sweet potato and eggs fried in palm oil. Another interesting fact is that the Akan people of Ghana and the Ivory Coast frequently name their children after the day of the week they were born. With twins the second to be born is known as the eldest as they had the maturity to help their sibling out first.

7. Brazilian birthday traditions

In Brazil you will eat delicious brigadeiro truffles on your birthday. They are chocolate fudge balls made of condensed milk, butter, and cocoa powder. From the north of Brazil to the south it’s a national passion.

8. Canadian Birthday Traditions

Prepare to get a nose full of butter if it’s your birthday in Canada!

9. Hungarian Birthday Traditions

In Hungary it is traditional to pull the ear of the birthday-haver while reciting a poem wishing them a long-life as long as their ears will be when they touch the floor.

10. Yi Mein noodles

In China you are served Yi Mein or long-life noodles on your birthday.

11. Sockenkranz wreath in Germany

Sockenkranz birthday traditions

Courtesy of charlotte.oconnor via Instagram

In Germany if you have reached the age of 25 and are still a bachelor then your mates will hang a wreath of socks outside your house. Not only this but when you turn 18 you will get an egg on the head, and flour on the head when you turn 16.

12. Danish birthday traditions

Danish children wake up to all their presents surrounding their bed. Another tradition is to decapitate the head of the birthday cake.

13. Korean birthday traditions

Traditionally in Korea first birthdays are celebrated individually and are known as Doljanchi but subsequent birthdays are celebrated in unison on Baek-il (Feast for the 100th day).

14. Don’t wish a German Happy Birthday early

Another interesting fact is that it is considered bad luck to wish a German person happy birthday before their birthday.

15. A royal birthday wish

Cards from the Royal Family are sent to those celebrating their 100th and 105th birthday and every year thereafter in Britain.

16. A birthday key

Here in South Africa we celebrate 21st birthdays by presenting a key to the birthday-haver signaling that they are now responsible.

17. Crown years in Holland

Your 5th, 10th, fifteenth, twentieth and twenty-first are important birthdays in the Netherlands and on these birthdays you can expect bigger presents!

18. Nigerian birthday traditions

1st birday birthday traditions

Courtesy of bayleaf.photography via Instagram

The 1st, 10th and fifteenth birthdays are the most important in Nigeria. On these day the family will celebrate with a big party which up to 100 people will attend.

19. Israeli birthday traditions

The 3rd birthday in Israel is the most important and on this day the baby gets their first haircut.

20. Choose wisely

Chinese babies are placed in front of an array of objects, whichever they choose is thought to predict their interests and successes later in life.

21. Russian birthday traditions

In Russia it is traditional to bring sweets to school to share with the students in your class.
Credit to Mental Floss

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