12 December is an important date in Corfu, when the island’s patron saint is celebrated and there is a local holiday.
At 11:00 on the eve of St. Spyridon’s Day the Saint ‘comes out’ – the shrine is brought out and placed at the left gate of the church and for three days, 24 hours a day, thousands of believers come to bow down before it.
A tradition that is inextricably linked to St. Spyridon’s Day is that of the making and eating of loukoumades. The roots of this tradition have been lost in the mists of time but it is said that believers who used to stay up all night ate loukoumades to help them to stay awake and to bear the cold.
Nowadays, the town and the villages prepare huge amounts of loukoumades which are a great excuse for gatherings and socializing.