Halloween is just around the corner, and millions of children in North America, and across the globe, are preparing their costumes, carving pumpkins, and gearing up to go door-to-door asking for candy. Though we might associate Halloween today with chocolate candies and silly pranks, the holiday actually has its roots in religious traditions. The origin point of North American halloween customs, for instance, can be traced back to Scotland and Ireland. But it’s not just the British isle that venerates the dearly departed: cultures across the world do it, too. Click through to read about some of the Halloween, and Halloween-like, holidays, festivals and celebrations across the globe.
1. China: Yu Lan.
Known in English as the Hungry Ghost Festival, this month-long celebration marks the return of the departed to the world of the living. Living relatives burn fake money, televisions, and other big-ticket items as an offering to the deceased; they also offer up elaborate meals as sacrifice, and stage elaborate operas to entertain the spirits.