Thanksgiving Celebrations Around the World

October 7, 2016

It's not just the US that goes to town during Thanksgiving. We know all the best places to eat, see, drink and celebrate Thanksgiving around the globe.

Thanksgiving, which falls on Thursday November 24th in 2016, is one of the USA's best loved holidays. From massive city street parades and meeting up with family to feasting on pumpkin pie and watching the NFL game, this is one tradition that is steeped in American culture. It's not just stateside though; around the world the celebration is marked in similarly traditional - and not so traditional - ways. We round up the best of the lot so you can get your seasonal fix wherever you are. 

Festive Thanksgiving in Munich

Thanksgiving Munich Market

If you're feeling homesick for some traditional Thanksgiving festivities then jump on the seasonal bandwagon at one of Germany's Christmas markets. True, they are in theory two separate holidays, but most of Germany's festive markets are in full swing by the end of the November. Munich is one of the best and features a mouth-watering array of Thanksgiving-worthy treats (pumpkin spiced cider and turkey schnitzel are two of our favourite) as well an abundance of craft stalls and beer tents. After, wander through the old town before heading to Ned Kelly's bar which often screens the annual NFL game.

For quirky digs at purse friendly prices try Wombat's Hostel (which includes all-you-can-eat-breakfast).

Down Under Thanksgiving on Norfolk Island

Thanksgiving on Norfolk Island

A far-flung island 1,412 kilometres off the east coast of Australia may not sound like somewhere you'd celebrate Thanksgiving but it is nevertheless an important holiday for the 2000 or so islanders who live here. The island, which is part of Australia, is one of the very few places outside of the U.S.A. that officially marks the day, a legacy from American whalers who settled here in the 1960s. Traditionally, locals visit Norfolk Island's churches with food and plenty of home-baked seasonal treats. The island is a popular destination for outdoor activities (including camping and hiking) so if you're visiting during November you can join in with the celebrations. It's considered one of the biggest holidays on the island so expect plenty of local festivities - as well as the obligatory turkey or two. 

Panorama Seaside Apartments in Burnt Pine offers great views. 

No Hassle Thanksgiving in Hong Kong

Thanksgiving Hong Kong

Hong Kong's huge expat community means that you'll find plenty of homesick Americans looking to celebrate the holiday. If the thought of sourcing everything you need for the perfect Thanksgiving meal sounds like a bit of a challenge then take the stress out of shopping with a decadent order from the Mandarin Oriental Hotel. Offering a custom-made box, you can pick from a range of seasonal dishes including roast turkey, honey glazed ham, sweet potato mash, hazelnut opera cake and salted butter pecan pie. Packaged and delivered straight to your door, all you have to do is cook at leisure. Another great option is the Thanksgiving-to-go menu from the Main Street Deli at The Langham Hong Kong which can be ordered for up to 20 people. If you're sticking around in the city, make time to visit Winterfest, HK's much loved festive event which starts in December. 

If you're looking for somewhere cheap and cheerful to crash, try Butterfly on Victoria Boutique Hotel

Traditional Thanksgiving in New York

Thanksgiving in New York

Nowhere does Thanksgiving quite like New York, arguably the epicentre for this traditionally American day. The highlight is the annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, a much-loved Manhattan event that sees marching bands, huge floats, celebrities, clowns, giant balloons and millions of New Yorkers take to the streets to walk the route between 77th and Central Park to 34th Street and Seventh Avenue. Most visitors arrive at around 9 a.m. (the parade runs until midday) with friends and family who are all keen to see the colourful processions and soak up the festive atmosphere. After, head to a NYC restaurant for a feast with all the trimmings (booking essential) before crashing out to watch the football.

We love the arty, all-suite rooms at The Box House Hotel

Foodie Thanksgiving in London

Thanksgiving in London

Even if you're not an American craving a taste of home, we don't blame you for wanting to try some of London's Thanksgiving fare. Founded in New York, Balthazar's American heritage is evident in its wonderful Thanksgiving set menu. Expect seasonal yummies like gingerbread flavoured cocktails, orange and chestnut stuffing and pumpkin cheesecake. Alternatively, the Big Easy in Covent Garden offers a pit-smoked turkey served with cornbread, candied sweet potato, stuffing and spinach or a three-course lobster feast (pumpkin and squash soup, lobster and pumpkin pie).

If only the grand-daddy of all feasts will do though, opt for The Breakfast Club in London Bridge. Their belt-busting menu of butternut bisque served with warm jalapeño and coriander cornbread, bacon and beer roasted Norfolk turkey, hasselback potatoes, pan juices and cranberry relish is followed by pumpkin pie and vanilla cream. Uber home we reckon. 

Need a nap after all that feasting? Check in to hipster hotspot the Generator Hostel

Tropical Thanksgiving in Antigua

Thanksgiving in Antigua

Say goodbye to chilly November days and celebrate Thanksgiving in tropical paradise. Many Caribbean hotels offer comprehensive all-inclusive packages for Thanksgiving week - one of our favourites is Jumby Bay in Antigua. This luxurious resort, surrounded by coconut trees and seriously Instagrammable beaches, once again brings guests their signature 'Island of Thanks' package in 2016. Sure, you might be on a palm fringed deck, but that doesn't mean you have to sacrifice tradition. Alongside plenty of opportunities for festive feasting, guests will also enjoy cocktail workshops, cooking classes and a Turkey Day sailing competition. For a tropical Thanksgiving twist, make sure you try resident chef Sylvain Hervochon's seasonal ducana, a Thanksgiving treat made of cornbread, coconut and pumpkin wrapped in banana leaf. 

Find great flight deals to Antigua with Expedia

Best of Both Thanksgiving in Hawaii

Thanksgiving Celebrations Around the World - Best of Both Thanksgiving in Hawaii

So you're yearning for sunshine but can't face the thought of not being on American soil for Thanksgiving? There's always Hawaii. Around the state capital, Honolulu, you'll find everything you'd expect on the mainland, including restaurants serving traditional turkey dinners and seasonal menus. At a balmy 25 degrees Celsius on average, it may not feel much like November at all, but you'll still be able to get into the traditional spirit with local parades (the Waikiki Holiday Parade which commemorates Pearl Harbour is held the Friday after). Alongside the usual Thanksgiving treats, expect to find Hawaiian versions of much-loved favourites - one of the best is the taro root cake, that serves as a local version of pumpkin pie. 

For a central location, stay at the Shoreline Hotel in Honolulu

Where's you favourite place to spend Thanksgiving? Tweet us @travioor or post a comment on Travioor's Facebook page

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Siobhan Brewood-Wyatt
After a Masters in Comparative Literature, Siobhan worked for several big-name travel companies before joining travioor. She has been hooked on travel since her teens and her biggest adventure is booking flights from Rome to Rio after a few too many beers. Follow her on Twitter @SiobhanBW