America is a vast continent in which each country has its own cultural traditions. As a result, we find a set of American customs that have endured over the years. In this article, we will talk about the habits of some of the countries in this territory.
Below you have an index with all the points that we are going to deal with in this article.
Central America and the Caribbean
Both in Central America and the Caribbean we find several countries whose traditions are the most original and can be rare for people who have never been to these territories.
On November 1, in Sumpango and Santiago Sacatepéquez, two small Guatemalan municipalities, the Giant kite festival. In it, huge kites made of tissue paper are launched into the sky, which take several months to make.
This tradition arises due to the belief that on that day the ancestors return to the world for 24 hours, making it a channel between the dead and the living. In addition, they ward off evil spirits.
Likewise, a contest of different categories is held in which the best models are awarded. Some of these kites can exceed 10 meters and their color impresses all who witness this tradition.
The situation in Puerto Rico is complex, since despite being a territory located in insular or isthmic America, in the Caribbean, it has belonged to the United States since 1898.
On this island we find a mixture of African, Spanish, indigenous and American traditions, which is reflected in its festivals. For example, Christmas begins for them on November 23.
During this time, it is typical to sing parties, a kind of Christmas carols that are performed at dawn in the homes of family and friends. As it goes without warning, this action is known as christmas assault.
Also, apart from the celebrations spread in other places such as Christmas Eve, Christmas, etc., in the Charcas neighborhood, in Quebradillas, the Jíbaro Festival, in which the assistants wear the typical costume of Puerto Rico.
Among the most widespread religious traditions in Latin America we find Holy Week, which is celebrated in April. In Honduras during these dates the Sawdust carpet.
These rugs are created with materials such as sawdust, seeds, flowers, etc. and they represent scenes from the Bible and the life of Jesus. They are placed in the main streets through which the procession will pass.
Although now they are related to the Christian religion, before colonial times, the indigenous people already created this type of crafts as a cult to their gods. It is in 1963 when the tradition was resumed.
North American traditions vary depending on the country we are in, although some extend beyond borders.
Today we still find Native Americans o american indians. Among the best known tribes is that of the Sioux, which in summer carries out the Dance of the sun, a rite by which they seek purification. In the past, this act was quite violent.
As for the eating habits of Americans, they ingest large amounts of fast food accompanied by sauces like ketchup, a fact related to the obesity problem in the country. However, young people are more aware of the importance of healthy food.
In American weddings, the white dress and the bouquet of flowers are typical. In addition, in the south of the country, it is customary for them to be held outdoors. So that it does not rain, a month before the ceremony a bottle of whiskey is buried which, on the wedding day, is unearthed to share with the guests.
One of the most famous Mexican traditions is that of performing mariachi music. This is represented by a minimum of two musicians who sing popular songs accompanied by stringed instruments. In Guadalajara, the International Mariachi and Charrería Encounter takes place every year, in which national and international groups perform.
Among the most important festivals in the country is that of the Day of the Dead, which takes place between November 1 and 2. On these days cemeteries are visited and offerings are brought to the ancestors.
During the nine days before Christmas, the Posadas are celebrated, which remember the way that José and María made to Bethlehem. On these dates different activities are organized, including breaking piñatas.
If you want to know more traditions of this territory, we recommend you read the following article: Mexican traditions: the most important customs of Mexico.
Another country in Anglo-Saxon America is Canada. Here, when greeting, shake hands and maintain an appropriate physical distance. In addition, people are treated by their surname, unless they indicate otherwise.
Halloween is celebrated on October 31, when houses are decorated and costume parties are held. In addition, the children go house to house saying the phrase Trick or Treat (in Spanish Trick or Treating), for which they ask for sweets in exchange for not carrying out a practical joke.
In addition to those already mentioned, in this article you can find more Canadian customs: What are the main customs and traditions of Canada?
The traditions of South America stand out for the mixture of their origins and their permanence over time. Next, we report the customs of some countries in Latin America:
La capoeira, a Brazilian martial art, began to develop in the XNUMXth century. Dance, acrobatics and body language are mixed in it. Its origin is related to black slaves.
Once slavery was banned, this fighting technique passed to the lower classes of the country, a fact that led to its ban in the XNUMXth century. However, thanks to the creation of the Mestre Bimba school, was legalized and popularized. Although in the past it was part of the oral tradition, today there are a significant number of schools throughout the world. In this video you can see a demonstration:
Furthermore, the Rio de Janeiro's carnival It is the most outstanding festival in the State. In it, the Samba Schools compete in the Sambadrome, a space with capacity for 75.000 people. Each group represents a different show and wears unique costumes.
El corridor It is one of the most important dances in Colombia. It emerged in the XNUMXth century and has influences from the European waltz. There are two different types: the party animal and the slow one.
This country has many types of dances, each originating from a different area. Here you can find the most outstanding ones: Typical dances of Colombia by region: from cumbia to joropo.
A special holiday is that of Day of the candles, which takes place on December 7. In it, the streets are filled with lighted candles. These symbolize the Immaculate Conception. It is the beginning of Christmas.
Among the traditions of Argentina, the most practiced is that of drinking matt, a kind of herbal infusion. This is part of the social customs of the country, because for Argentines it is a great gesture to invite a person to mate or share it.
La Pachamama Festival It is a celebration that can be rare for those who do not know it. It is an act in which holes are dug in the ground and food, drink, coca leaves, etc. are thrown in.
It is an event focused on making an offering to the Mother Earth and thank you for everything received in a year. It is organized in some areas of Argentina, such as Salta, especially in the mountainous parts.
During this act, holes are dug in the ground and food, drink, coca leaves, etc. are thrown in. In this way, an offering is made to the Mother Earth and he is thanked for everything received in a year.
Among the different aboriginal groups of Ecuador is that of the Shuar. In it, they accept sonoral marriage (marrying the spouse's sisters) and levirate (with the brother's widow). Likewise, polygamy in men is accepted.
Within the Christmas customs, the New Year's Eve celebration entails the burning puppets. These are made from cardboard, old clothes, etc. and they are exhibited on the street, so in some areas they even organize contests.
You can learn more about the country's customs in this article: Customs and traditions in Ecuador.
The gastronomy in Venezuela is rich and varied. Among its culinary customs, we find that of bread with ham, a typical Christmas dish. This is cooked with ham, bacon, green olives and raisins, ingredients that are introduced into a sweet dough.
Another popular dish is Creole flag, which has its origin in the nineteenth century. The products used for its preparation are: white rice, shredded meat, black beans and fried plantain. One of the eating habits of this population is to eat three times a day.
In the following article you will find the rest of the traditions of this country: Venezuelan traditions and customs.
A dance that is danced in the Andean area of Peru is the zamacueca. This has its origin in the XNUMXth and XNUMXth centuries. It is a couple dance in which both the man and the woman wear a white handkerchief in their right hands. It is a combination of European and African American dances.
On the other hand, in Peru the elaboration of the crafts, whose designs have been inherited from pre-Columbian times. Among its different elaborations, the fabrics with geometric prints and the chipped mattes.
The latter are the fruit of the pumpkin, which are decorated with ancient techniques. The chipped mattes oldest known are 3.500 years.
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