Christmas in Brazil
Christ the Redeemer stands as a fitting symbol of the Brazilians’ inclusive spirit throughout the year and especially during Christmas in Brazil

As revels in its global look at Christmas traditions around the globe, we freely admit: it can be difficult to point to any one country and give it exclusive credit for inspiring any single tradition.

At Christmastime, after all, the world becomes a melting pot of converging traditions, all somewhat familiar in their own way. In America, Santa wears a red suit; in Europe, St. Nicholas prefers a lush, velvet robe. Either way, he is instantly recognized the world over.

Shining a light on Christmas in Brazil

For anyone who has cast a lingering eye on glittering lights during the holiday season, it’s difficult not to credit Brazil for properly honoring the significance of light. After all, as the authors of history tell us, without a bright star in the night sky to guide them, three determined men would not have been able to find a tiny child laying in an obscure, sleepy town known as Bethlehem.

Like no other country in the world, Brazil has catapulted the seasonal significance of light into a worldwide celebration. From the beginning of November until mid-January, the country celebrates Natal Luz, or Christmas of Light, with concerts, plays and musicals in the city of Gramado.

A towering, 99-foot Christmas is a grand spectacle in its own right, but remember: this is Brazil. Visitors can actually walk through the tree and come face to face with some 35,000 flickering ornaments, 2,600 string lights and 1,000 strobe lights, all while artificial snow flutters from above.

Like moths that are naturally drawn to light, hundreds of thousands of people descend on the town during Christmas in Brazil; luckily, the rest of the world can watch from afar since the festival is broadcast via satellite.

Meanwhile, Brazil’s other breathtaking sight is not far away: the Christ the Redeemer statue, with its outstretched arms, welcoming the world, just as the north star welcomed those three weary travelers to Bethlehem.

There is even more to learn about Christmas in Brazil. Share our story with your friends on Facebook or Twitter over a cup of coffee — another proud Brazilian tradition. Then watch as their faces – well, light up in appreciation.

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