Unusual cultural welcomes

Greeting traditions vary across world cultures and across time. In the New Testament bible times, the phrase "Greet one another with a holy kiss" is mentioned five times. Even Jesus complained to Simon and said, "I came into your house, and you did not give me a kiss." This act was called the kiss of peace.


Here are seven other unusual greetings from across the world.

  1. In Tibet: To say hello to you, the people of Tibet stick their tongues out.
  2. New Zealand. They greet visitors (not each other) with a gesture called hongi. They do it by closing their eyes and gently touching foreheads and noses together.
  3. In Spain, when you greet, you kiss on the cheek. Twice.
  4. In Thailand, the traditional Thai greeting is called Wai. You press your palms together (as if praying), and slightly bow your head.
  5. In Japan, you bow. Generally, the deeper the bow, the more you respect the other person.
  6. In Yemen and Oman people bring their noses together for a few friendly taps
  7. On the island of Tuvalu, pressing cheeks together and taking a deep breath is part of a traditional Polynesian welcome for visitors.

Today, whether you choose to use a handshake, smile or a cultural greeting, make the person beside you know that you are happy to see them today.

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