Giving Thanks Around the World

The holiday season is here! All across the country families will be getting together to spend time with loved ones, share some delicious food, and remember everything there is to be thankful for. Many people know that American Thanksgiving began in 1621, with Native Americans sharing food with the early Pilgrims in the spirit of giving. What you may not know is that countries all around the world have similar holidays and festivals with traditions that are unique to their own cultures.

#1 Chuseok

The people of Korea celebrate Chuseok, which is also commonly known as Korean Thanksgiving Day. The harvest holiday always begins on the 15th day of the 8th month on the lunar calendar and continues for three days. Just as Americans have traditional dishes we serve on Thanksgiving day, the signature dish of Chuseok is called songpyeon, a rice cake that is specially made for the occasion. During this celebration, Koreans travel to their ancestral hometowns and before eating, they will gather underneath the moonlight and take the time to remember their forefathers.

#2 Erntedankfest

In Germany, the Thanksgiving celebration is known as Erntedankfest. Though the holiday is celebrated around mid-September in Switzerland, German Erntedankfest is usually celebrated on the first Sunday in October. Like many countries, it is a time to ring in the autumn harvest. The holiday is observed by many rural Protestant and Catholic churches that will put on thanksgiving processions and crown a harvest queen with the harvest crown, followed by music, dancing, parades, and of course, plenty of food. In the spirit of the holidays, the food that isn’t eaten during the celebration is given to the needy.

#3 Canadian Thanksgiving

Believe it or not, the U.S. was not the first country to ever celebrate Thanksgiving. The holiday was first celebrated by explorer Martin Frobisher in the territory now known as Nunavut in 1578, thus making Canada the location of the first Thanksgiving. The holiday has been celebrated on the second Monday in October ever since Canadian parliament made the holiday official with a proclamation in 1957. Much like our own celebration, it is a time for people to look back on the year and give thanks for a good harvest and good fortunes.

No matter where you are in the world, the ideas and values surrounding Thanksgiving always remain the same – to take the time to stop and give thanks for all that we have and to spend time with the people who mean the most. At Pierbusseti, we are thankful that every day we are able to learn about the great wonders of the world and help others discover new destinations, and of course, we are thankful for our wonderful clients.

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