Valentine's Day in Colombia
Valentine's Day, known as "Día de San Valentín" or "Día del Amor y la Amistad" (Day of Love and Friendship) in Colombia, is a special day for people to express their love and affection towards their significant others, friends, and family members. Unlike many other countries, Valentine's Day in Colombia is celebrated on the third Saturday of September, rather than on February 14th.
The celebration of Valentine's Day in Colombia can be traced back to the 1960s when the Colombian Chamber of Commerce introduced the concept to the country as a way to promote commerce and boost sales during the typically slow month of September. The idea was to encourage people to buy gifts for their loved ones, and since then, the tradition has evolved and adapted to Colombian culture.
National customs for Valentine's Day in Colombia
On Valentine's Day in Colombia, people usually exchange gifts, flowers, chocolates, and romantic cards with their partners, friends, and family members. It is common for couples to go out for a romantic dinner or spend quality time together at home. Many restaurants and hotels offer special promotions and events for the occasion, making it a popular night for dining out.
Group gatherings and parties among friends are also common, as the day is not only about romantic love but also about celebrating friendship. In some cases, people participate in a traditional game called "Amigo Secreto" (Secret Friend), similar to Secret Santa, where they draw names of friends and anonymously give them gifts or small tokens of appreciation.
Local customs for Valentine's Day in Colombia
While the overall customs of Valentine's Day are quite similar across the country, some local variations can be found. In certain regions of Colombia, it is customary to celebrate with serenades, where groups of musicians are hired to sing romantic songs to a person's loved one. This is a heartfelt and traditional way to express affection and love.
In some cities, like Medellín, there is a tradition known as "El Día de Los Comprometidos" (The Day of the Engaged) that takes place on the same day as Valentine's Day. This tradition encourages couples to formalize their relationships by getting engaged or married on this special day.
Valentine's Day in Colombia, celebrated as the Day of Love and Friendship, is a unique and cherished event that not only focuses on romantic love but also emphasizes the importance of friendship and family bonds. With its warm and inclusive approach to the celebration, Colombia offers a refreshing perspective on the concept of love and affection, making it a truly special occasion for all those who take part in the festivities.