VARIOUS: From singing santas in Sweden to the City of Lights turning even brighter, Europeans celebrate...
- Title: VARIOUS: From singing santas in Sweden to the City of Lights turning even brighter, Europeans celebrate Christmas with varied activities
- Date: 30th December 2005
- Summary: (L!WE) NUREMBERG, GERMANY (FILE: NOVEMBER 11, 2005) (REUTERS) NIGHT SHOT LAS PAN DOWN CHURCH AS CHRISTMAS CAROL IS HEARD CLOSE OF (SOUNDBITE) (German) CHRIST CHILD SAYING: "You men and women who were once children." WIDE OF CHRIST CHILD AND ANGELS ON TOP OF CHURCH'S BALCONY DURING OPENING CEREMONY FOR ANNUAL NUREMBERG CHRISTMAS MARKET LIGHTS GOING ON AT CHRISTMAS MARKET STALLS, PAN TO CHURCH
- Reuters ID: LVAEGXUC7W0AJ63CTQHTEX8TJG7Q
- Duration: 00:00:34
- Aspect Ratio:
- Topics: Religion
- Story Text: Europeans celebrated the spirit of the Christmas season with various activities that reflect the diversity of cultures throughout the continent.
In Paris, the Eiffel tower sparkled as search lights were attached to the top of the monument.
Extra fixtures added to the Champs Elysee and Arc du Triomphe helped the French capital shine brightly.
Small children would have been wide-eyed to see Pope Benedict at his weekly general audience at the Vatican on Wednesday (December 21). The only thing really missing were the reindeer as the seventy-eight-year-old pontiff was slowly driven round St. Peter's square wearing a red cape and a red velvet hat trimmed with white fur.
But Pope Benedict wasn't trying to get into the festive mood, in fact he was wearing a 'camauro' - a head warmer commonly used in the middle ages. The 'camauro' often seen in medieval paintings of popes was last seen in public on Pope John XXIII who died in 1963.
The pontiff, who suffered from a cold last week, decided to bring back the tradition and protect himself from the biting cold at the Vatican.
In Rome, a Christmas tree was put up near the Vittoriano Statue to bring some holiday spirit to the Italian capital.
In the Swedish town of Gllivare, Santas from around the world gathered to take part in the World Santa games.
Events including singing, dancing, and fastest porridge eating tested the St. Nicholas' prowesses to discover who was the real man in red.
In Stockholm, as in many European cities, the variety of presents and decorations on offer at Christmas markets bulged the purses of holiday shoppers already reaching their patience's and credit card limits.
In Jozefow, just outside of Warsaw, manufacturers of Christmas decorations are working at full speed to make it for the holidays. A small workshop of the family owned company Silverado produces a wide array of colourful designs. Each peace is hand decorated. Most of the production reaches stores in the United States.
A large tree in front of Berlin's landmark Brandenburg Gate reminds tourists and locals alike of the Christmas season which was recently opened in Nuremberg at the traditional "Christkindl" market.
The Christmas tree on the eastern side of the Brandenburg Gate, once the symbol for German division and later for reunification, is traditionally decorated by youths who this year carved some 300 wooden apples and stars painted in festive red and gold.
In late November, perhaps the world's best known Christmas market is opened in the southern town of Nuremberg.
Crowds of Christmas shoppers enjoy a mug of traditional Gluehwein (pron. GLOO-vine), or mulled wine, eat a Nuremberg roasted sausage or just enjoy a stroll past the stalls selling everything from gingerbread hearts to wooden figurines.
As much as the people of Berlin and elsewhere had hoped for snow, weather forecasts predict rain for December 24 when Germans celebrate Christmas.
Light snow is expected to fall only on Monday, making a white Christmas in Germany unlikely.
A seventy-two metre tall christmas tree looks over an ice skating ring in the centre of Warsaw. In the days before holidays the highest christmas tree is illuminated in an array of colours. The "Millennium Tree" is an international project managed by Better World company. A twin tree is standing in Lisbon.
In Moscow, the falling snow on Sint Basil's Cathedral make for a magnificent backdrop to the city's stunning architectural landscape. A Christmas tree with blue flickering lights has been installed to add to the delight of Muscovites.
In Stockholm, a couple practised their Christmas etiquette by stealing a sneaky kiss in a phone booth under a mistletoe.
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