The best of the rest
■ The people of Iceland exchange books on Christmas Eve and spend the rest of the night reading in a tradition known as The Christmas Book Flood.
■ The Bolivians bring roosters to midnight mass as a symbol of the belief that a rooster was the first animal to announce the birth of baby Jesus.
■ On December 23, Mexicans carve nativity scenes into large radishes which are then displayed at the Christmas market in the city of Oaxaca.
■ In Caracas, the capital of Venezuela, revellers travel to early morning church services during Christmas on roller skates
■ Norwegians hide all the brooms in the house on Christmas Eve to stop witches from stealing them for a midnight ride.
■ In Russia, Christmas is celebrated on January 7 when Babouschka, meaning old woman or grandmother, brings gifts to children. Babouschka is based on the biblical story of the woman who didn’t give a gift to baby Jesus and so to repent, she now gives gifts to children at Christmas.