Valentine’s Day Traditions from Around the World

At Anne’s Florals and Gifts in Hudson, NH, we love Valentine’s Day! Did you know that other countries celebrate this day of love too? Check out some of the fun traditions below!

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Japan (with some similarities to South Korea and Taiwan)

In Japan, Valentine’s Day was started by a local business man marketing his wares to foreigners. Gradually, it caught hold. Today, it is primarily for women to show their love to the men in their lives. Often, it is followed by “White Day” on March 14 which is for men to reciprocate.

There are 4 kinds of chocolate. Cheap, obligatory chocolate that you give to people because you have to even if you don’t like them. Slightly better obligatory chocolate that you give to your boss and Dad. Friendship chocolate that you give to your girlfriends. And the most expensive “True Feeling” chocolate which is reserved for those you actually like. If you really, really like them you could even make the chocolate yourself. (And you thought picking one of our sweets was hard!)

Denmark & Norway

Instead of little cartoon notes exchanged in elementary school, the Danish men write “Gaekkebrev” which are funny little poems or rhyming love notes anonymously sent to women. The Gaekkebrev include a clue in the form of one dot per letter of the writer’s name. If the women can guess who their secret admirer is, they may later collect one Easter egg from their admirer. On the other hand, if they can’t guess, their admirer gets to collect an egg from them.


Slovenian lore states that February 14 is the day that the birds marry their mates kicking off the spring season. Celebrations include walking barefoot through the frosty fields to watch the birds and it is generally considered an auspicious time to start working in the vineyards or fields.


Back in the day, Welsh sailors used to pass the time by carving intricate “love spoons” for their sweethearts. Symbology on the handle describes the quality of his love. For instance, wheels symbolize his hard work, key’s his heart, and beads the number of offspring he wanted. To this day, men continue to gift their loves with spoons on February 14.


In some areas of England, Old Father or Mother Valentine may sneakily leave small gifts and chocolate outside of childrens’ doors. Must be Santa’s sibling.


At one time, single French men and women played “une loterie d’amour” or the Lottery of Love. Men and women would stand in houses facing each other and call to one another until they were paired off. Women who were not paired off gathered together, built a raging bonfire, and threw mementos of the men who rejected them into it. Eventually, French officials had to ban the traditional Valentine celebrations for being too rowdy.


Did you know that in America, Valentine’s Day roses are so popular that 110 million of them will be sold and shipped in the three days surrounding February 14. Red means passionate love, white means purity and faith, yellow means friendship, and pink means “I like you”. However, more and more people are buying other kinds of flowers.

In America, most Valentine’s day cards are purchased by women while more flowers are bought by men. When men do buy cards, they often buy 2: an obligatory romantic one and a funny one.

Also, 3% of pet owners will buy a Valentine’s Day gift for their pet.

How will you celebrate your love this year?

For more fun Valentine’s facts, visit here or our Facebook page.

And if you’re looking to celebrate your own Valentine’s Day traditions, come see us at Anne’s Florals and Gifts, your all-in-one-stop shop for everyone you love.

Contact For Floral Arrangements 603.889.9903