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"Christmas customs" Top 5 Page for this destination Krakow Local Custom Tip by matcrazy1

Krakow Local Customs: 270 reviews and 333 photos

  KOLEDNICY (carol singers)
by matcrazy1

CHRISTMAS TREE is obligatory at home and at work. The more so that everyone expects to find a Christmas gift under it. And Krakow’s hand-painted glass decorations are known worldwide. But watch out for mistletoe hanging–now rarely–from the ceiling: those standing under it cannot refuse a kiss.
Krakow CHRISTMAS CRIBS are fabulous, colorful and glittering portable theaters for the Nativity traditional puppet plays, and building them remains a fairly popular hobby. At the same time amateur and professional companies of players stage the Nativity live shows in the holiday season. And seeing the Nativity various scenes in numerous Krakow churches also is a popular family activity.
POLISH CAROLS, and there are hundreds of them, often centuries-old, apart from sweet lullabies rely largely on traditional dancing tunes, so no wonder they sound pretty lively.
‘OPLATEK’ wafers are wallet-size, paper-thin and crisp leafs of bread, white or colored, with an impression of the Nativity scene. In Poland before the Christmas Eve dinner those present approach one another with an ‘oplatek’ wafer in hand and offer wishes. When approached everybody listens to wishes, says wishes in return, breaks off a bit from the other guy’s wafer, eats it, and kisses him or her on both cheeks. ‘Oplatek’ also means popular December and January social gatherings in Poland where invited guests, even perfect strangers, practice the ritual among themselves in addition to regular cocktail-party socializing. And it is usual to visit friends and family before or over the Christmastide to share the ‘oplatek’ wafer with them and exchange wishes.
"KOLEDNICY" carol singers still go from door to door in the holiday season but nowadays schoolchildren (for their efforts they expect small change rather than sweets) replaced expert adult performers of old.

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  • Written Dec 8, 2002
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