Christmas in Jamaica

Christmas is a very special time in Jamaica. People paint their houses and hang new curtains and decorations for Christmas. Most families spend Christmas Day at home with friends and family members.

In Jamaica, Christmas Eve is also called ‘Grand Market’. In every town and city there is a cross between a festival and a market. During the day, people go shopping for Christmas foods, clothes, sweets and toys, etc.

Around 6.00pm the evening part of Grand Market starts and it lasts until the morning! Everyone comes out in their best clothes to celebrate and party all night. All the streets, shops and many houses are decorated with lights. There are street vendors selling food like jerk chicken, boiled corn, and sweets like candy canes and sugarcane.

Following the Grand Market, some people will go to a Midnight Mass Church Service and others will party all night. Many people will also go to a Church Service on Christmas Day morning before the end of Grand Market.

The Christmas Day breakfast includes ackee and saltfish, breadfruit, fried plantains, boiled bananas, freshly squeezed fruit juice and tea.

The Christmas day meal the traditional Jamaican Christmas meal with fresh fruits, sorrel, rum punch and meat.

Dinner is usually served in the late afternoon and this may include chicken, curry goat, stewed oxtail, rice and peas.

Jamaican red wine and rum fruitcake is traditional and is eaten in most homes. The fruits in the cake are soaked in red wine and white rum for months before Christmas.

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