14th February… In many countries in Europe, it is a time when the majority of restaurants are booked, and almost every shop welcomes its guests with expositions full of flowers, chocolates, heart-shaped balloons, card and small love-related souvenirs. Whether you are a single or not, whether you are a fan of this day or you hate it, you might be interested in Valentine’s Day in South America looks like regarding traditions & customs. Maybe next year you will take your partner there to celebrate together. Or maybe you will find an opportunity to escape from the love madness to another continent. 🙂
People in South America do not always celebrate Valentine’s Day on the same date like in Europe. For instance, in Brazil, 14th February usually overlaps with the Brazil Carnival. However, it does not mean that there is no Valentine’s Day at all. Brazilians celebrate this day on 12th June, and it is called “Dia dos Namorados” which means “Lovers’ Day”. During this day, couples exchange small gift, e.g. chocolates and flowers, just like in Europe. Single women take part in special rituals which are believed to help them in finding a good husband in the future. As 14th February is “free” from the Valentine’s Day, you can choose this destination if you are tired of love atmosphere.
There is the Valentine’s Day in Peru on 14th February, even though this date also often overlaps with the Carnaval. The main difference is that, instead of giving the roses as a gift, people give each other orchids (orchids are the flowers which naturally grow in this country). Other small gifts are also often exchanged. February in Peru is full of fun, a bit romantic month. The Valentine’s Day is called there “Día del Amor y la Amistad” which means “Day of Love and Friendship”. This day is also a holiday for locals.
Ecuadorians also celebrate the Valentine’s Day, and in the major cities, you can buy many sweet valentines-related products. During this day, there is a tradition for women to wear red outfits. Similarly like in Europe, red roses are very popular. What is interesting, Ecuador is the significant exporter of those flowers. Compared to Brasil and Peru, in Ecuador, this day is celebrated in the most European way, so there are no chances for successful escape from this day if you seek for it. In this country again this day is referred to as “Day of Love and Friendship”.
In Bolivia, there is no Valentine’s Day on 14th February – it is celebrated on 21st September which for Bolivians is the first day of spring. What is interesting, among “Day of Love and Friendship”, in this country there are two other events celebrated together: mentioned the First Day of Spring (Día de la Primavera) and Student’s Day (Día del Estudiante). People who possess a partner exchange gifts whereas young people who are in education have lots of special activities at their schools. This day can be considered as a perfect day to visit this country due to numerous events in the cities: parties, special offers for dinners, et cetera.
Valentine’s Day is celebrated in Chile on 14th February and is called “Lovers’Day”. During this time you can admire decorated (e.g. with hearts or balloons) streets and shops. Lovers’ Day is a day full of emotions and excitement for the couples who often decide to go for a romantic dinner. Restaurants have lots of special offers then. Clubs also organise Valentine’s parties and are usually full of people. So, in this country it is also impossible, at least in cities, to get a chance to escape from the loving atmosphere but consider this destination if you are looking for a romantic place to celebrate love with your partner.
Valentine’s Day in South America – summary
To sum up, customs & traditions regarding Valentine’s Day in South America differ much depending on the country. Choose Brasil or Bolivia if you are not really into Valentine’s Day. And think about Chile, Ecuador or Peru if you want to spend this time a bit like in Europe but with the taste of South American culture.
What do you think about Valentine’s Day? Would you like to visit this continent in February? If yes, what countries exactly? At this moment, regarding “special occasions”, our team is rather focused on considering New Year’s Eve tour to Ecuador rather than a trip which could include celebrating Valentine’s Day. 🙂 But our offers depend much on your needs, so contact us if you have any ideas about your dream tour and we certainly will think about this.