Mother’s Day Traditions Around the World

Mother’s Day is traditionally celebrated in the US on the second Sunday of May. While the holiday traces its roots to ancient Greece and Rome, Mother’s Day as we know it today was started by two feisty women in the early 19th century. Anna Reeves Jarvis and Julia Ward Howe are credited as the women who started a movement to celebrate motherhood.

On this day, we typically send the moms in our lives a bunch of flowers and a Mother’s Day card. It is also the day when most phone lines are busy as people across the nation call their moms to greet them. If you’re feeling especially festive, you can send your mom a basket of delicious pastries.

But what about the rest of the world? Let’s take a look at how the rest of the world celebrates Mother’s Day.

A 10-Day Festival in India

Talk about a celebration! In the Indian culture, Mother’s Day is celebrated in October to coincide with the Durga Puja festival in honor of Durga, the goddess of mothers. The 10-day long celebration is both a religious holiday and a day for many families to be reunited. The history of the festival itself is long, dating back to the sixteenth century when it was said that the Durga brought her children home to her parents.

In the modern-day festivities, families spend days preparing food and their homes to welcome visiting family from across the country.

A Symbolic Flower in Japan

After World War II, Japan introduced a day in March to comfort mothers who lost family members during the war. It was at this time that carnations became synonymous with motherhood as this became the flower of choice during Japanese celebrations of Mother’s Day. The flower is said to symbolize the enduring sweetness of becoming a mother. 

A French Medal for Motherhood

Similar to the U.S., France celebrates Mother’s Day in May. Unlike the U.S., they celebrate it at the end of the month. Called “fetes des meres,” the occasion was traditionally celebrated by presenting mothers of large families with a medal for their contribution to helping rebuild France’s population after the first World War. 

Nowadays, the occasion is celebrated more akin to how Americans do it–with cards and flowers sent to mom and dinners to bring the whole family together. And where they used to present medals as badges of honor, nowadays, mothers in France commonly receive flower-shaped cakes as presents. 

A Significant Day in Mexico

Mother’s Day in Mexico always falls on May 10, regardless of what day it falls on. Fun fact: the day was actually declared through a poll run by a national newspaper asking what day is best to honor their mothers and that was the date that won.

What started in Mexico has also spread to other Latin American countries. It is a day of great importance for most families as they celebrate the Queen of the House (Las Reinas des Casas) with beautiful music and delicious food. 

Present Mom with a Delicious Array of Mother’s Day Goodies

While Mother’s Day traditions around the world vary, the one thing the holiday has in common is food. From India to Mexico to the U.S., Mother’s Day celebrations are not complete without family around the dinner table enjoying each other’s company.

Dulcet Gift Baskets can help you add a touch of decadence to the occasion. We offer various baked goods beautifully wrapped in our signature boxes or tin cans. You can choose from an assortment of cookies, brownies, muffins, and other baked goods to make your mom feel like a queen.

Browse our selection of Mother’s Day Gourmet Gifts here.