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Hogmanay Facts

15 Most Lively Hogmanay Facts That Make The New Year’s Party Fun

STOKE TRAVEL'S GUIDE TO HOGMANAY - Stoke Travel

Do you like new year’s parties? Well, the New Year’s celebration is the most awaited moment. The splendor of parties, parades and lively fireworks sounds why we love New Year. Did you know that every country has its own culture and way of celebrating the new year? For instance, Hogmanay is a New Year’s celebration native to Scotland.

In fact, Hogmanay literally means the last day of the old year. This celebration is intended to welcome the new year. Then, on what date is Hogmanay celebrated? It is celebrated every January 2nd. At this celebration, you can enjoy various lively things.

Are you someone who likes New Year’s parties? Are you curious about more information about Hogmanay? And are you ready to visit Scotland to join in on the Hogmanay celebrations? Let’s party together! We have compiled the most lively Hogmanay facts that make the new year’s party fun.

1. The Excitement Beats The Christmas Celebrations

The Excitement Beats The Christmas Celebrations

We associate Christmas and New Year’s celebrations together because the timing is close. The two holidays complement each other. However, did you know that the celebration of Hogmanay, a new year’s celebration, is considered a more significant celebration than Christmas in Scotland! 

This can happen due to historical religious conflicts that occurred in the past. In the past, Scotland prohibited Christmas celebrations for 400 years. The restriction becomes part of the culture, making the joy of Hogmanay beat the celebration of Christmas Day even in the modern-day.

2. Fun Expression for Welcoming The Old Year Away

ng The Old Year Away

Every celebration has its own catchphrase. This is done as a festive and lively symbol of joy and identity. In fact, if you visit Scotland during Hogmanay celebrations, you will often hear people shouting: Haud Hogmanay! Haud Hogmanay!

This is an expression of Scottish happiness in welcoming the old year away. They will say Neerday! Neerday! When the new year comes. Do you want to shout this slogan? Come to Scotland at the end of the year!

3. Neighbors Visit Each Other In The Morning

Neighbors Visit Each Other In The Morning

Unlike New Year’s celebrations in other countries, Hogmanay is a celebration for a family. People also celebrate it with neighbors and friends. At Hogmanay celebrations, Scottish residents will visit the homes of neighbors or friends to chat and give each other food and drink.

Given that Hogmanay is the biggest celebration in Scotland, all citizens will celebrate it with joy. Hogmanay symbolizes gratitude and hopes for good luck and prosperity in the year to come. Exchanging gifts becomes the realization of that sense of hope. This tradition is known as First Footing.

4. The Biggest Hogmanay Ever!

The Biggest Hogmanay Ever!

Hogmanay has transformed into Scotland’s biggest party. A holiday set by the government to celebrate Hogmanay. Did you know Hogmanay was once celebrated by so many people?

Hogmanay, held in Edinburgh in 1997, was the biggest Hogmanay ever. More than 400 thousand people celebrated together at the event on the highway. This extraordinary participation rate has also been recorded in the Guinness Book of Records. However, the celebrations have become restricted in recent times because of safety reasons.

5. Auld Lang Syne is the Hogmanay Anthem

Auld Lang Syne is the Hogmanay Anthem

Besides having a slogan, Hogmanay also has its own anthem. At Hogmanay celebrations in the new year, the Scots will sing Auld Lang Syne. They will sing this song while crossing and joining hands. This tradition turns out to have a correlation with freemasonry.

In this teaching, the song Auld Lang Syne is sung by members who form a circle of unity. This is a Masonic ritual also called the chain of union. Until now, this song must have been sung during Hogmanay celebrations.

6. Clean Ash and Dust To The End

Clean Ash and Dust To The End

Cleaning the house has become a common habit in society. After all, you need to do it to keep the environment clean and prevent disease. However, did you know that residents in Scotland will clean their homes before the Hogmanay peak celebration by throwing old ashes and dust into the fire? 

Do you know the reason? In addition to cleaning the environment, this symbolizes cleansing from bad luck in the old year and preparing to welcome the new year. They throw away the ashes to get rid of bad luck. Everyone keeps their house as clean as possible for this festive celebration.

7. Comes from the Celebration of the End of the Harvest

Comes from the Celebration of the End of the Harvest

We already know about Scottish people’s festivities and culture to welcome and celebrate Hogmanay. However, do you know where the Hogmanay celebrations came from?

In fact, Hogmanay stems from a celebration that marks the end of a harvest period. The people of Scotland have done it hundreds of years ago. This statement used to be called Samhain. Over time, this celebration was developed and enhanced with various festivals and cultural celebrations.

8. Party at the Bells is a New Nickname

Party at the Bells is a New Nickname

After series of postponements because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Hogmanay celebration is ready to provide an epic comeback. This new celebration was given the name Party at the Bells.

Various famous artists joined the celebration of this new year. The Party at the Bells celebration happened in the garden below the Castle. A series of parties and parades were broadcast on a series of screens for the audience on Princes Street. More than 30 thousand people attended the celebration to enjoy the countdown, which started at 10 pm.

9. The Torchlight Procession Is The Preserved Ancient Procession

The Torchlight Procession Is The Preserved Ancient Procession

Let’s move on to the following interesting Hogmanay fact. The Torchlight Procession is an ancient custom of the Hogmanay party. This procession is the activity of lighting a bonfire that is burning brightly.

After that, there was a procession of rolling blazing barrels down the hill. The most unique thing is the activity of throwing a torch as a symbol of new beginnings and rebirth.

10. Loony Dook is a Cold Challenge

Loony Dook is a Cold Challenge

If you can stand the cold weather, you can participate in the event known as the Loony Dook. It is part of a series of Hogmanay celebrations. Hogmanay Edinburgh regularly hosts a Loony Dook in South Queensferry, starting at 10 AM. 

Scotland’s largest Loony Dook requires you to put on your best swimsuit and plunge into the icy waters. You have to buy an access ticket to the beach and can see the main parade and band performances. Are you ready to take on this chilling challenge?

11. Amazing Huge Drone Display

Amazing Huge Drone Display

In addition to the procession of lighting bonfires and fireworks, Hogmanay celebrations in Scotland also include a large drone display at the end of the parade. Since drone technology developed, it has become a fun and fantastic entertainment medium.

This session consists of 3 parts with unique drone shapes and formations. The average drone speed reaches 25 mph with a height of about 150 meters. The drones that form the image of a galloping stag mesmerized the visitors and participants of the Hogmanay celebration.

12. Unique and Delicious Hogmanay Food

Unique and Delicious Hogmanay Food

A celebration is not complete if there is no unique food that accompanies it. Several traditional Scottish dishes have become iconic dishes of Hogmanay celebrations. One of the most unique and famous is haggis. Have you ever tasted this exceptional food? 

This Scottish national dish combines lamb offal with wheat and fat seasoned with herbs. This dish is very delicious because it comes with a savory broth. It is the most popular New Year’s Eve dish in Scotland.

In addition to the main dish, the black bun is a dessert that best reflects the excitement of Hogmanay. This is a fruit cake with essential ingredients of raisins, allspice, almonds, orange zest, ginger, cinnamon, and black pepper. The aroma and taste are very distinctive and delicious!

13. Descendants of The Viking Festival

Descendants of The Viking Festival

Who among you doesn’t know about the Vikings? One of the strongest tribes has a variety of unique and festive party cultures. Did you know that Hogmanay’s origin roots in the Viking festival

From a historical perspective, the Vikings had a significant influence on Scotland. The Shetland and Orkney areas of the Northern Islands were under the Viking’s rule. The excitement of the Hogmanay celebrations also took inspiration from Viking celebrations which recognized the winter solstice.

14. Attractive and Amazing Stonehaven Fireball

Attractive and Amazing Stonehaven Fireball

In addition to the fantastic fireworks and drone shows, the fireball processions and parades are exhilarating. This unique and extreme activity happened in Stonehaven, Scotland. Professionals perform Fireball attractions by playing Fireball with active hand movements. 

This makes for a very bright fire pattern. This parade usually starts at night, namely on Hogmanay New Year’s Eve. This Fireball parade includes 40 men and women who walk while playing Fireball along the street.

15. Exciting Hogmanay Iconic Dancing

Exciting Hogmanay Iconic Dancing

New Year’s celebrations will be more lively if we dance together. Hogmanay also involves Scottish dance. A pair of men and women usually perform the Hogmanay dance. The dance movements include holding hands, turning, and moving their feet agilely. People do this traditional dance while wearing a Scottish checkered skirt. Let’s dance together and have a fun and exciting Hogmanay!

Those are the most interesting and hilarious facts about Hogmanay celebrations in Scotland. Which fact do you think is the most amazing? Give your answer in the comments column!

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