Christmas holiday’s in Zakopane are magical. Snow-covered streets, beautiful decorations and sleigh rides with torches. With every second inn one can hear highlanders’ singles and offer hot mullions for cold inns in Krupówki. There is a unique Christmas atmosphere.
Christmas precedes Advent, in which according to tradition one should not eat meat and fats and only use milk for dishes. Alcohol is also banned. In the past, these were usually strictly observed, today a little less. As underlined by Stanisław Łukaszczyk from Murzasichle, a neighbor with us, in the highlander tradition, the first guest of Christmas Eve should be a man. On this festive day, you should not borrow fools or money. The custom of decorating and setting a Christmas tree came to the mountains together with the first tourists who lived in Zakopane. Similarly in Podhale there was no habit of eating fish.
Christmas Eve is the most important night of the year. Many of the customs that apply to this day are related to marriage; Girls after dinner run to the pigsty, and then move the door three times. It is believed that depending on how many times the pig will make a sound, in so many years the girl will get married. According to the custom, girls also throw dice or calf legs at the same time and then they call the dog. This girl whose bone will catch the first animal will lose innocence. Another way to tell about getting married is to bring wood. After counting the pieces, an even number means a husband. After eating dinner and going outside, you should shout. From the side from which the voice will bounce or the dog will speak – her future husband will come. The number of stars in the sky during Christmas Eve symbolizes for housewives, a multitude of eggs next year. The hosts also look to the sky that evening. For them, empty sky means empty tables, while clouds mean a good year. The family sits down to supper when the first star appears in the sky. In the highland tradition, the gazda or host brings to the room a sheaf of hay that he puts next to the table. After the Sunday of the Three Kings, the sheaf was threshed, and the seed was used for the first sowing. On the Christmas Eve table there should be 12 dishes and one additional covering, which formerly was put in order to “bida be ate and give peace”, and now it is prepared for an unexpected guest. During this special evening you can not run out of hay under the tablecloth – the symbol of the birth of Jesus in a stable; a sheaf of grain located in the corner of the room, which will ensure full yield for the new year, and a podiszonej podalijam podkiźniczki – branches of fir protecting from bad powers. For the fir to work, it must have the shape of a cross.
On the Christmas Eve table there should be 12 dishes and one additional covering, which formerly was put in order to “bida be ate and give peace”, and now it is prepared for an unexpected guest. During this special evening you can not run out of hay under the tablecloth – the symbol of the birth of Jesus in a stable; a sheaf of grain located in the corner of the room, which will ensure full yield for the new year, and a podiszonej podalijam podkiźniczki – branches of fir protecting from bad powers. For the fir to work, it must have the shape of a cross. The supper begins with gazda breaking the wafer with the others and giving them wishes. The remains of dishes after supper are given to animals. Sianko, which is under the tablecloth, is added to the daily cattle feed, “which would hide well.” On this day you can not argue so that the whole year is calm. This is also the day when the housekeeper puts flax on all the spindles in the house, so that the whole year would have something to spin. Neither work nor visits to neighbors are allowed. At midnight everyone must go to a midnight Mass, or a solemn Holy Mass in a highlander setting. At Christmas, you can not visit others or do any work. The visit is about the next day, on St. Stephen’s feast. Until the Three Kings it is a time of common caroling by children who, dressed up, knock on the door of houses and sing Christmas carols.
Holidays at Villa Gorsky are magical. Interiors beautifully decorated with decorations, crackling wood in the fireplace and snowy fields and meadows. As every year, we invite you to spend this family Christmas with us. Many attractions await guests as a sleigh ride with torches ending in a bonfire and regional delicacies. A Christmas Eve supper is prepared for guests during which Santa Claus presents gifts to children.