February 14, 2020
Many other countries celebrate Valentine's Day, too, each in their own way. Here is a look at other countries' Valentine's Day.
Although Valentine's Day is a relatively new holiday in Denmark (celebrated since the early 1990s according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark), the country has embraced February 14th with a Danish twist. Rather than roses, friends and sweethearts exchange pressed white flowers called snowdrops.
It's been said that the first Valentine's Day card originated in France when Charles, Duke of Orleans, sent love letters to his wife while imprisoned in the Tower of London in 1415. Today, Valentine's Day cards remain a popular tradition in France and around the world.
You won't find the Welsh celebrating Saint Valentine -- instead, people in Wales celebrate Saint Dwynwen, the Welsh patron saint of lovers, on January 25th. One traditional romantic Welsh gift is a love spoon. As early as the 17th century, Welsh men carved intricate wooden spoons as a token of affection for the women they loved. Patterns and symbols were carved into these love spoons, each signifying a different meaning. A few examples include horseshoes, which stand for good luck; wheels, which symbolize support; and keys, which symbolize the keys to a man's heart. Today, love spoons are also exchanged for celebrations such as weddings, anniversaries and births.
Originally, Italians celebrated Valentine's Day as the Spring Festival. The young and amorous gathered outside in gardens and such to enjoy poetry readings and music before taking a stroll with their beloved.
While Valentine's Day celebrations in the Philippines are similar to celebrations in Western countries, one tradition has swept the country and led to thousands of couples sharing a wedding day on February 14th. Mass wedding ceremonies have gained popularity in the Philippines in recent years
In Slovenia, February 14 is considered a prime day for working in the fields as St. Valentine is one of the patron saints of spring. Slovenians typically celebrate romance a month later, on St. Gregory’s Day, which falls on March 12.
Finland celebrates Friend’s Day on February 14, a day for honoring both friends and significant others. Cards and gifts are still given out, and can be for anyone from a best friend to a neighbor. February 14 is also a popular day to get engaged in both countries. Additionally, Estonia has an interesting tradition for single people—they can take a ride on the Love Bus in hopes of meeting someone special.