n a few days 2020 will be history and we will welcome 2021! Let’s see how Greeks get prepared about this special event and how they celebrate this special day! First of all, New year is a big family celebration, I can say that it is bigger than Christmas, and especially this year everybody anticipates to say good bye to 2020..
In Greek is called Πρωτοχρονιά – Protohronia, and it’s not only New Year’s Day but also Saint Vasilios day – the day that all those who are baptized Vasilis (Bill) and Vasiliki celebrate their name day.
Agios Vasilis is the “Greek Santa Claus”. Traditionally, Agios Vasileios used to be completely different as far as their appearance is concerned: our “Santa Claus” is not the jolly, chubby, white beard Santa with the red clothes and the reindeer (after all these animals never existed in Greece), he was the bishop of Caesarea who lived on the 4th century and thus he is usually depicted as a pious figure, dressed in long, clergy robes and wearing a long beard. He is still kids’ most favorite Saint and they wait for that day all year round as Agios Vasileios comes to deliver their presents! Yes you understood well, obviously he comes on New Years Eve and not on Christmas time and that’s when Greeks usually exchange their presents! It is considered good luck to inaugurate the new year by offering and receiving something new, special, a small sweet gesture! The new year present like a charm, an amulet, a small treasure incorporates all the love and the positive vibes of your beloved people and that will help you cope with the new year in the very best of the ways!