As with celebrations in other countries, Valentine’s Day is the best chance you will get to tell your loved one how you feel in style, no matter in which Scandinavian country you are - Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Iceland or Finland. As Valentine’s Day is celebrated around the world, the spirit of this day also creeps to the cold Scandinavian regions. It’s true that there are umpteen numbers of myths regarding the origins of the Valentine’s Day. However, with all the celebrations, Valentine is emphasized to be a romantic figure and therefore is one of the most popular among European saints.
Valentine’s Day Traditions in Scandinavia
Among the most popular customs listed on the social calendar of Norway is Valentine’s Day. The Norwegian legends on Valentine’s Day states that the signs of true love are seen when birds mate. Therefore, this celebration has begun to be associated with the mating of birds and Norwegians look for this on February 14th. Over the years, Spring celebrations have become merged with Valentine’s Day celebrations. The stores in huge cities sell different types of special goodies for Valentine’s Day, along with red hearts.
Denmark took some time to warm up the trend of Valentine’s Day and it had cautiously begun to embrace the customs of Valentine’s Day. Love notes known as 'gaekkebrev’ are swapped by young couples as part of the celebration. This works with one person writing a rhyme for his beloved and signing with dots instead of a name. The girl gets an egg at Easter if she guesses the name correctly. Apart from this, Valentine’s Day is celebrated with many events such as flower displays and live concerts.
The Swedish couples have a rather different way of celebrating Valentine’s Day. Inspired by their American Counterparts, they go to clubs with live music, take a walk along the beach or visit good restaurants. Flower-sellers promote Valentine’s Day and have been doing so since the 1960s. Valentine’s Day in Sweden is marked by the exchange of pastries, roses and jelly hearts by lovers and the idea behind the celebration is to show your loved one how much you love and appreciate him/ her.
Austerity is the norm when it comes to Valentine’s Day celebrations in Iceland. The use of flowers is common and bouquets are sent to one’s beloved as a mark of love. All shops sell beautiful rose bouquets on this day and there are many different varieties of bouquets available. Apart from flowers, festive food is a common feature marking Valentine’s Day celebrations in Iceland. The beauty of having a meal with your loved one is that you can have both breakfast and dinner by candlelight, since the daylight hours are limited at this time of the year.
Valentine’s Day is a very popular celebration in Finland, despite the fact that it has only recently caught up with the rest of the world in its celebrations. In fact, it was only since the 1980s that Valentine’s Day was celebrated here. At the present, Valentine’s Day is celebrated with much pomp and splendor, with events and dances to mark what they call "Ystävänpäivä", or "Day of Friendship".