Christmas Words in Spanish

Feliz Navidad
    Feliz Navidad
    Used under license from Getty Images

Christmas is one of the most popular celebrations in the Western world, and Spanish speaking countries are no exception.

While a white Christmas may not be so common in usually warmer Spanish-speaking countries, most of the Christmas traditions of the English-speaking world also translate into Spanish.

Take a look at some words and expressions that will help you celebrate Christmas with friends and family across language barriers.

Christmas Greetings

Let's start with the basics: how to wish someone a merry Christmas in Spanish. Here are some common Christmas greetings and well wishes:

  • ¡Feliz Navidad! - Merry Christmas!
  • ¡Felices fiestas! - Happy holidays!
  • ¡Feliz Navidad y próspero Año Nuevo! - Merry Christmas and a happy New Year!
  • Que pases lindo esta Navidad. - Have a nice time this Christmas.
  • ¡Te deseo una feliz Navidad! - I wish you a Merry Christmas!
  • ¡Mis mejores deseos para esta Navidad! - All my best wishes for this Christmas!
  • Brindo por - I toast to...

Christmas Traditions

Knowing how to wish someone a merry Christmas is definitely helpful around Christmas time, but you'll need some more vocabulary if you want to move the conversation further. Pay close attention to the lists below and expand your Christmas vocabulary.

Important Times

  • La Navidad - Christmas
  • La Nochebuena - Christmas Eve
  • El día de Navidad - Christmas Day
  • La medianoche - Midnight


  • El árbol/arbolito de Navidad - Christmas tree
  • Los adornos - Decorations
  • La guirnalda - Garland
  • El muérdago - Mistletoe
  • Las luces - Lights

Food & Drink

  • El turrón - Nougat (a common food around Christmas time in most Spanish-speaking countries)
  • El mazapán - Marzipan
  • Las galletas/galletitas - Cookies
  • Los frutos secos - A general term for nuts, almonds and the like.
  • El panettone/El pan dulce - Panettone
  • El lechón - A pork-based dish, a young pig.
  • El pavo - Turkey
  • El cordero - Lamb
  • El champán - Champagne
  • El vino - Wine
  • La sidra - Cider

Other Traditions

  • Los regalos - Presents
  • Abrir los regalos - Open the presents
  • La cena - Dinner
  • Comer -To eat
  • Brindar - To make a toast
  • El brindis - Toast
  • La fiesta - Party
  • Papá Noel/San Nicolás - Santa Claus
  • El trineo - Sleigh
  • Los renos - Reindeer
  • El villancico - Christmas carol
  • La tarjeta - Card

Religious Terms

Even though nowadays Christmas is celebrated by people of different beliefs, it was originally a Christian holiday. This is especially noticeable in Spanish-speaking countries, where the majority of the population is usually Christian. With this in mind, it is useful to learn some more religious Christmas vocabulary in Spanish, whether you are religious yourself or not.

  • ¡Que Dios te bendiga! - May God bless you!
  • El niño Jesús - Baby Jesus
  • La virgen María - Virgin Mary
  • La iglesia - Church
  • La misa - Mass
  • La Misa de Gallo - A Christmas mass held around midnight.
  • ¿A qué hora es la misa? - At what time is mass held?
  • ¿Dónde es la misa? - Where is mass held?
  • El belén/pesebre - Nativity scene

Whatever your beliefs, Christmas is always a great excuse to get together with your loved ones and celebrate. Study the vocabulary above to spread the love in a second language.

¡Feliz Navidad!