Christmas German Tradition: St Nikolaus

Christmas German Tradition: St Nikolaus

This evening sees a lovely tradition in our family, St Nikolaus day.

On the evening of the 5th December children in Germany leave a boot Nikolaus Stiefel (Nikolaus boot) outside their door before bedtime.

In the morning, their boots are filled with sweet treats if they have been good.  However, if they need to work on their behaviour then they will receive a stick.  I guess it is a bit of a hint on whether they have been good or not, giving them a chance to change before Christmas Eve.

To me it seems like no time until C-day. However, the kids have been complaining that it is a ‘big long’ time away. So this nice tradition is a little bit of excitement in the long lead up to Christmas.  It keeps them going and it is so nice to see their faces in the morning.

As a Brit this tradition was pretty new to me, but one that we have embraced.

Leaving out the boots

So last night I gathered the boys and reminded them to leave a boot out.

They were pretty excited, although were feeling pretty confident that they would get sweets.  They met Santa on Sunday, who told them they had been good.

They also wrote out their Christmas list for Santa to take with him.  He is going to get a surprise though, there are a few new items on this list.  I am sure this will cause him a slight panic as I believe Santa has already sorted out their pressies……

Two red boots sit on the floor, with a rolled up christmas list in each. All ready for St Nikolaus

Wake Up Mummy

It was so nice in the morning to wake up and see their faces light up.  They were so excited to see sweets and fruit in their boots.

Two boots filled with sweet treats - bananas and chocolate. A little elf sits by a sign from St Nikolaus which says: "Thanks for your christmas lists. You have been good boys, keep it up!"

Keeping St Nikolaus Going

So I guess the big question is, will we keep this tradition going when we return to the UK?

We certainly plan to, it is a really nice start to December.  The kids love having a little something extra to look forward to.

To see a little bit more of our family Christmas, check out our Instagram page.

I would love to hear of any traditions that you do with your family on the lead up to Christmas.  Let me know in the comments.

Have you heard of St Nikolaus visiting on the evening of the 5th December?  

Do you practice this tradition? 

Do you celebrate St Nikolaus on December 6th?  We talk about this festive tradition and what that means in Germany


  1. 1st January 2017 / 1:22 am

    Such a cute idea. I’m sure they were super chuffed with all their goodies! #globalblogging

  2. 13th December 2016 / 9:16 pm

    What a fun tradition. Even though I am of German decent I’ve never heard of it. This is a fun way to give the kids something to break up the holiday anticipation. For us parents there never seems to be enough time, but for them this is probably torture! Very cool. LOL Happy the boys didn’t get sticks! Wouldn’t that be a downer?

  3. 13th December 2016 / 8:50 pm

    I’ve not heard of this, but I really love the idea of it. If you have got children that have been naughty its a great way to get them to focus on being good. Mind you I can’t imagine I would be able to leave a stick out (maybe half a stick and 1 sweet!) Alice keeps asking when Christmas is, it is a long time to wait in their little world. Thank you for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove x

  4. 12th December 2016 / 12:45 pm

    What a lovely tradition – it’s the first time I’ve heard about it so thanks so much for sharing with #coolmumclub! xx

  5. 11th December 2016 / 8:24 pm

    What a lovely tradition! I’ve never heard of it before, but the timing is great – just as you’re getting into the Christmas spirit but when the big day still feels like a long way away for children! I wonder how many children actually get a stick though? Thanks for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove

    • Double the Monkey Business
      12th December 2016 / 11:39 am

      ha ha – I wonder the same thing! I am not sure I would have the heart 🙂 x

  6. 11th December 2016 / 10:48 am

    This is great – something I’ve not heard if but love the idea of doing. Sarah #FabFridayPost

    • Double the Monkey Business
      12th December 2016 / 11:38 am

      Thanks for reading, have a lovely christmas x

  7. 9th December 2016 / 1:26 pm

    Oh I love this idea, so cute!! You should absolutely keep the tradition up :0 Thanks for linking up #bestandworst

    • Double the Monkey Business
      12th December 2016 / 11:38 am

      Definitely going to try, I have a feeling the boys won’t let us forget x

    • Double the Monkey Business
      12th December 2016 / 11:37 am

      Love the pun 🙂 x

  8. 8th December 2016 / 1:22 pm

    This is such a lovely tradition. We have started elf on the shelf this year, and will be taking little man to the farm to see santa and the reindeer and the pantomime so we have a few traditions that we try and do with him each year. #bestandworst

    • Double the Monkey Business
      12th December 2016 / 11:36 am

      That all sounds perfect! We need to take the kids to the pantomime, we haven’t done that yet. I hope you have a lovely time x

  9. 7th December 2016 / 10:47 pm

    I’ve never heard of this before, but I like the idea. The build up to Christmas is so long, having something to break it up a bit is a great idea #waywow

    • Double the Monkey Business
      12th December 2016 / 11:35 am

      It is true, it feel like forever when you are small and this just keeps them going xxx

    • Double the Monkey Business
      12th December 2016 / 11:37 am

      It is so nice, hope you have a lovely christmas. x

  10. 7th December 2016 / 7:14 pm

    Love this! What a cool tradition. Wish I would have known about this sooner!

    • Double the Monkey Business
      12th December 2016 / 11:37 am

      Thanks for reading, have a lovely christmas. x

  11. 7th December 2016 / 5:11 pm

    I remember learning about this tradition when I was younger and I think it’s lovely. As you say – a nice way to start the festivities and build the excitement! x #bestandworst

    • Double the Monkey Business
      12th December 2016 / 11:35 am

      It is such a lovely way to build excitement, hope you have a lovely Christmas hun x

  12. 7th December 2016 / 8:43 am

    My mom’s German and she used to do the same when we were kids. Sadly I never did it for my kids, such a pty, because it really is a lovely tradition.

    • Double the Monkey Business
      12th December 2016 / 11:34 am

      That is a shame, it is a lovely tradition. Need to keep it up when we move x

  13. 6th December 2016 / 12:45 pm

    Love this. I used to teacha wsix week unit called Holidays Around The World and we focuses on Germany quite a bit. It was my favorite unit to teach to kids who never left their small farming community.

    Thanks for the post.


    • Double the Monkey Business
      12th December 2016 / 11:34 am

      I bet that was incredibly interesting to teach! I am always fascinated about customs around the world. x

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