Latino Holiday Traditions: How Do You Celebrate?

Does your family celebrate unique traditions when the holidays roll around? Although many of these practices may seem silly, the holidays just wouldn’t feel the same with out them! Check out some of our favorite Latino Holiday traditions from around the world:

In Puerto Rico, children celebrate the festive Dia de los Reyes by placing hay under their beds to feed the hungry camels of the 3 Kings. But we all know the real reason kids play along is because there will be a present where the hay used to be the very next morning. It’s like the Latino version of tooth fairy.

The tradition of eating 12 Grapes to commemorate the months of the year started back in the motherland, España. Now it is celebrated all over Latin America, but seems to be most popular in Mexican celebrations of the New Year. Pop 12 grapes while making twelve wishes and your dreams will all come true. 

Coquito is hands down the best Latino Holiday tradition we can think of. Made mainly in the Spanish Caribbean, the delicious blend of coconut milk, cinnamon and rum make it an irresistible part of any holiday celebration.

For Dominicanos, packing a suitcase and walking around the block on New Year’s helps to ensure safe travels and luck for the following 12 months.

Many of us have adopted the celebration of Noche Buena. Instead of waiting for the sun to rise, we stay up on Christmas eve and wait until the clock strikes midnight to open our gifts—a huge advantage for Latino children all over the world!

No one really knows why wearing yellow underwear on New Years Eve helps bring good luck, but it couldn’t hurt, right? All over South America, the yellow panties are flying as ladies change into them before the New Year strikes.  

Cubanos, on the other hand, believe that a clean slate must begin with your house (sounds like Mami put them up to this one). After cleaning your entire home, take the bucket of dirty water and throw it over your balcony at midnight to wash away any bad energy from the previous year.

Tucking money around the house helps bring prosperity according to Ecuadorianos. Just be sure you remember where you hid the dinero, or else New Year’s Day will not be so fun!

                What special holiday traditions are close to your heart? Share in the comments below!

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                About this author1

                Mariela Rosario,

                I'm a raging opinionista and I love to share my ramblings on everything from pop culture to food to stuff that makes me laugh & cry! I've worked in all types of media (TV, film, print) and was previously the online editor at Latina magazine before joining Mamás Latinas. On most nights you can find me working my way through my library of cookbooks or playing with my puppy Lola (my only child so far). I have a wonderful hubby who shares my passion for any and all kinds of travel. Together, we've formed a semi-professional wine drinking team.

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