Do Russians celebrate Valentine's Day?

Valentine's Hearts Banner Graphic
Valentine's Hearts

Valentine's Day the Russian Way

Of course cards, flowers, chocolate, and teddy bears, and other gifts are given away each year to lovely ladies and (sometimes) kind gentlemen on February 14th. Perhaps items involving cupids, doves, or the heart shape would be given as well…

But in Russia, this happens on March 8th, and it only happens for women. It is International Women’s Day, and people in Russia celebrate this day by giving similar gifts to girls and women, regardless of age.

The most popular gifts being chocolate and flowers.

In America we celebrate Valentine’s Day because of Saint Valentine, or Valentinus. In Russia, they celebrate Women’s Day because it pays tribute to the indomitable spirit of women across the globe and equal rights.

Men in Russia respect this holiday, and husbands will sometimes do all the cooking, cleaning, and tending to the kids on this day to allow the women a full day of rest.

С Днем 8-го Марта тебя! Or, Happy Women’s Day!

Interesting Notes about Women’s Day:

It was originally called International Working Women’s Day, it is now known officially as International Women’s Day, or IWD.

The first national Women’s Day happened in 1909, and had started in NYC as a protest for voting rights, among other things.

Barack Obama made the month of March Women’s History Month in 2011.

This holiday is a non-working holiday in Russia (unlike the US).

Mimosa Flowers
Mimosa flowers; popular floral gift for IWD


About the author

Lindsey Mae is freelance artist who enjoys writing fun blog posts for and The Russian Store.

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