Dominican Republic is a nation on the island of Hispaniola, part of the Greater Antilles archipelago in the Caribbean region.
Christmas Celebations in Dominican Republic :
As a dominantly Christian country, Christmas Day in the Dominican Republic is one of the most important days of the year.
Dominicans celebrate Christmas day because of their strong religious and cultural beliefs. Nonetheless, the holiday season is all about family, friends and neighbors, a time to mark the birth of Christ. In preparation for Navidad in the Dominican Republic, Dominicans put out all kinds of decorations. In addition to nativity scenes, you will also see displays of the Three Kings and various Catholic saints. Other common decorations include poinsettas, aka Estrella de Navidad, which grow outdoors in the Dominican Republic, as well as charamicos, which are a type of folk art statue made from wood and straw.
There are distinct Christmas traditions in Dominican Republic. Notably, the holidays are already up in the air even several weeks before Christmas day. Carols are sign that Christmas is just around the corner when the ‘Pericos Ripiaos’ – a group of 3-4 people who plays indigenous instruments such as güira, drum and accordion – start appearing and singing the Christmas songs such as “Ya llegó la Navidad “(“Deck the Halls”) and “Qué verdes son” (“Oh Christmas Tree”). Afterwards, everybody heads off to the “final destination” where the carolers and the neighbors flock to for more music, food and drinks.
Christmas celebrations start earlier in Dominican Republic as by the 24th of December, everything seems to stop. Many businesses close as early as they can to prepare for the Noche Buena, the Christmas eve dinner. Many family members go home early to wrap presents and prepare for the glorious midnight meal which is celebrated before the Midnight Mass or the misa de gallo and here is when Christmas celebrated begins. In addition to traditional food and drinks, fireworks or the Fuegos artificiales are very important staples in Dominican Christmas tradition.
Traditional Christmas Dishes include Puerco asado (roasted pork), Pollo asado o al horno (roasted or oven-baked chicken), Pasteles en Hojas (root vegetables cooked in banana or plantain leaves), and huge plates of dulce or sweets like caramels, jellies and marshmallows. The jengibre is a special holiday drink – warm drink infuses ginger roots with jagu, a sweet fruit about the size of an orange and a taste similar to ginger. Dominicans love giving gifts; they give them on Christmas Day and on Three Kings’ Day, and as part of a tradition called Un Angelito. This is basically a secret gift exchange with a twist. Instead of giving your Angelito one gift for Christmas, you give them a little something each week of the Christmas season.
Christmas Celebrations are grand in Santo Domingo, the capital city of Dominican Republic. Apart from it, Christmas celebrations are also bigger in other big cities like – Santo Domingo de Guzmán, Santiago de los Caballeros, Santo Domingo Oeste, Santo Domingo Este, Santo Domingo Norte, San Felipe de Puerto Plata, Concepción de la Vega, San Pedro de Macorís, La Romana, Los Alcarrizos (D.M.), San Francisco de Macoris, San Cristóbal, Salvaleón de Higüey, etc.
We wish all readers Merry Christmas 2016 & Prosperous New Year 2017 !!