Merry Christmas everyone!
Christmas, the most joyous season of the year has come. Let’s explore how we celebrate it in Sunda!
Here we have Christmas traditions, Christmas shopping, and Christmas holiday, which one is your favorite? ;-)
In addition to churches' rituals, Christians also celebrate this season with some traditions. Some of them are:
The first christmas tradition is decorating a christmas tree.
The Catholics start the season with 4 weeks of advent to prepare us for the birth of Jesus. Hence, Catholic churches are not decorated with Christmas trees and ornaments until Christmas eve.
However, public places such as hospitals, schools, especially shopping malls, usually are already decorated beforehand. Not surprisingly, this year some malls did an early start by decorating and selling Christmas ornaments as early as the end of October!
Nowadays, most Christmas trees are not the real pine trees. These artificial trees are not only in traditional green but also in white, purple, even black :) Where can we buy them?
Although most of the shopping malls offer Christmas ornaments, we, at ExploreSunda.com, recommend these two shops: ACE, especially the one at Living World Mall and Metro Department Store. These two have complete range of Christmas decorations. Every year they have new theme for these Christmas decorations. The only drawback is the price is relatively more expensive. Fortunately, they always offer the post season sale, where we can buy them with a steep discounted price. We just need to be patient to hang them on next year's Christmas tree :)
Since they are wholesaler, we can buy them at lower price compared to the ones in shopping malls. However, it is difficult to find something unique here.
Speaking of uniqueness, how do you feel about handmade Christmas tree? We can pour out our creativity by creating a hand made Christmas tree. I have seen Christmas trees made of Lego, wrap papers, tissue papers, plastic glasses, and a tree full of pictures of a hospital staffs.
Another important Christmas decoration is the Christmas nativity scene, representing the birth of Jesus.
The second Christmas tradition is family gathering, either to go to church together or dinner with the whole family, followed by gift exchange. Usually we put presents under the Christmas tree.
Visiting shopping mall during Christmas season is always fun. They are fully decorated with Christmas ornaments and play Christmas songs all day long. The most interesting part is every mall competes to offer the most attractive events. Since Indonesia is a tropical country, Christmas takes place during rainy season. Hence, the snow, Santa Claus, Santa village and white Christmas are always the most favorite chosen theme. Many shopping malls keep the tradition of Christmas carol, choir competition, and Santa Claus photo sessions as part of their Christmas program.
However, one thing every mall has in common is the late night sale. Usually it starts from 8PM until midnight, where we can get significant discounts during this event. Recently, some of the sale extends to all day long instead of specific hours. So, Christmas shopping can be a fun event for everyone :)
Since Christmas and New Year are only seven days apart, many people take an extended holiday to enjoy it with their families and loved ones. The most visited places in Sunda are Bandung, Lembang, Puncak, and Pangandaran beach. Usually people plan it months before, otherwise it would be difficult to get hotels and transportation tickets.
But, if you want to stay in Greater Jakarta area, there are plenty of attractions to entertain your whole family. For example, experience playing in the snow at Trans Snow World, see the sea creatures in Jakarta Aquarium, or visit museums.
Last but not at all least tradition is for us to greet each other a Merry Christmas on the Christmas day.
Christmas is a season of great joy: a time for remembering the past,
cherish the present and hoping for the future.
Thus, we, from ExploreSunda.com, wish you:
May all the peace and joy of Christmas be with us all