"Christmas Traditions" Budapest Local Custom Tip by blint

Budapest Local Customs: 231 reviews and 279 photos


On the night of December 5th St Nicholas (Szent Mikulas) or in Britain or America as he is known: Father Christmas or Santa Claus comes to visit.

This tradition originates from the story that Mikulas wanted to help out a poor old man who did not have the money to pay the dowry for his daughters therefore they would have been sold into slavery. Mikulas is thought to have thrown money into his shoes drying by the open fire. This brought about the tradition of hanging stockings by the fireplace in the hope of getting presents.

These days in Hungary the children receive sweets of small toys on this night and Szent Mikulas is thought to be accompanied by an angel and a type of black demon who looks for those children who have been naughty and leaves them golden twigs as a warning.

On Saturday 6th December you can in fact see many shop workers and so forth wearing horns and carrying golden twigs.

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  • Written Dec 7, 2008
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