Here, in Scotland, we like to kick the Christmas celebrations off early! The Scots don't pass up an excuse for a party, throughout the year, and Christmas is no different. The nights are growing colder and darker, as the faint hope for snow grows ever more evident. Halloween and Bonfire night have just passed, and now the main focus turns to that special time of year. On the 12th of November, Paisley will be the first place in Scotland to kick off the celebrations.
Their Christmas light switch on is highly anticipated by residents and visitors alike, who gather in the streets to see the turning on of the lights. In the weeks leading up to this event, decorations and lighting are placed subtly around the town and magically, as if overnight, the town is turned into a winter wonderland of dancing lights. Families huddle together, giggling excitedly, in anticipation as the reindeer parade kicks off the event. Hot mugs of Eggnog and hot chocolate are passed around from the local tearoom. Christmas crafts are displayed along twinkling market stalls. Santa even pays a visit, as Scouting for Girls play in the background. This free, daytime event, is the perfect start for the countdown to Christmas.
Paisley is the first town to switch their Christmas lights on, but other towns and cities are quick to follow. By the 21st of November, Scotland is well into its Christmas celebrations, with it's very own winter wonderland, from one location to the next. Events like Glasgow and Edinburgh's Christmas, festivals that lasts from late November, through to the 7th of January, are a few of the largely awaited events, for local residents. Visitors are equally excited, flocking in their droves to experience the Christmas that Scotland has to offer. Fairground rides, craft stalls, ice-skating, live shows and a Christmas tree maze are a few of the many exciting activities included. There is also a Scottish food market, where visitors can enjoy a taste of the local cuisine.
Glasgow's Christmas, George Square Christmas Lights Turn On
Every city and town throughout Scotland does Christmas slightly differently, but the message is the same throughout the country. Christmas is a special time of year and what better way to celebrate than to put on the lights, gather as family and friends with a hot chocolate or mulled wine, and enjoy the festivities.
Edinburgh's Christmas, Food Market offering hot food dishes from around the world
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