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Terri Mapes

Iceland Has 13 Santas

By November 21, 2013

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Christmas in Iceland is an interesting experience as this country has many old traditions for celebrating Christmas. Expect no fewer than 13 Icelandic Santa Clauses!

In Iceland, they're the "Yuletide Lads". The origin of these "Santas" is centuries old, and each has its own name, character and role. Nowadays their function is to come to town bearing gifts and candy (and a prank or two).

The first of them arrives 13 days before Christmas -- and after Christmas, they leave one by one. The Icelandic Christmas season lasts 26 days... Learn more about Christmas traditions in Iceland.

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