Christmasis the most belovedholiday in Bulgaria.
In Bulgarian language Christmas is Koleda(in Cyrillic alphabet – Коледа) or Rozhdestvo Hristovo (The birth of Christ)
Christmas tree is one of the most popular traditions associatedwith the celebration of Christmas and decorating an evergreenconifer. Before Christmas, the tree is cut, brings home anddecorated with colored lights, ornaments and candy.
Christmas Eve is one of themost important family holidays.People meet together around a dinner table.
Christmas Eve dinnerTradition dictates that there areonly meatless meals on thetable. They have to be 7, 9 or 11. Most often these are vegetables, fruits, beans, stuffed peppers with beans or rice, cooked dried fruits, nuts.
Christmas Eve dinnerOn the table there is necessarily a ritual bread. The table is not cleaned up all night.
Christmas EveAt the fireplaces people put a big log thatburns all night. It is believed that the lightand warmth of the Yule log symbolizes thebirth of the new sun and the appearance ofthe Savior - Jesus Christ.
Christmas EveIf the Yule log burn, the family canexpect better being during next year.
Christmas Eve The night until 24:00 is quiet andpeaceful. People expect the birth of Christ.
Christmas Eve At midnight begins the custom koleduvane. Koledars are single men and younger guys. They have a leader who is older and is not a bachelor. Koleduvane time is strictly defined by the tradition - from midnight to dawn on Christmas. Koledars go around homes and sing Christmas songs with wishes for health, happiness, rich harvest, and hosts give them a ritual bread.