On December 25th, people from all over the world will celebrate Christmas with their family traditions. Each family makes the holiday season a little different, and many have traditionally taken on countless generations.
The royal family is no exception to the rule. They also celebrate the feast in the same way as the rest of the world … with a few exceptions, of course. Many people are interested in why the royal family does not open their gifts to Christmas.
Why the royal family does not open gifts to Christmas
The royal family exchanges its presents on Christmas Eve on tea instead of Christmas in the morning. This royal family tradition began with King George (father of Queen Elizabeth II), of German origin. In Germany, gifts are opened on Christmas Eve.
Where does the royal family celebrate Christmas?
The royal family celebrates Christmas at the Queen's Residence in Sandringham. The Queen arrives earlier than the rest of the family (on December 19 or 20) to oversee preparations. The rest of the royal family arrives in the morning or early afternoon at Christmas Eve. This includes the children of Queen Elizabeth, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, as well as wider family members.
What does the royal family do to Christmas Eve?
Apart from the exchange of gifts, the royal family enjoys company of one another in Christmas Eve. For a long time it was surprising that holidays were a time for the royal family to be together without the weight of the world (or the United Kingdom, in any case) on their shoulders.
What does the royal family do at Christmas?
The Christmas day is busy for the royal family. After a hearty breakfast, they go to the church service of St. Mary Magdelene in Sandringham. When the service is complete, they return home for a traditional holiday.
Queen Elizabeth II gives her annual Christmas message to the whole of Britain and the Kingdom of the Commonwealth, which is broadcast via television. The rest of the royal family watches while giving their speech. In the evening, everyone enjoys the meal before retiring at night.
What does the royal family eat for their Christmas meal?
Sources say that the royal family has always had the same Christmas meals as long as anyone can remember. It never changes. Salad of shrimp or lobsters is associated with roast turkey, pasta, Brussels sprouts and carrots. Christmas pudding with brandy butter is served for dessert.
What other royal family have other annual traditions?
The Queen and her husband traditionally send over 750 Christmas cards, and also buy a special Christmas pudding for all members of their household (which counts hundreds). The card depicts a family photo that we are thrilled to inform everyone, including the beloved (and adorable) queen of Queen Elizabeth II.
Donations are made by the Queen of various charities around Sandringham, and she also donates several Christmas trees. It's also a time of year for all royal families to show their gratitude to those who serve them throughout the rest of the year.
What's different this year?
Although the royal family (and especially Queen Elizabeth) usually do not wander from tradition, this year promises to be a little different. Despite the strict "family only" policy on private holidays, rumors say the Queen has invited her mother Megan Mark, Doria Raglen.
Surprisingly, even Kate Middleton was not allowed to attend before her, and Prince William officially married. Last year, when she was only hired for Prince Harry, Markl was invited – breaking the tradition once again.