STOCKHOLM, Sweden: In Stockholm, Sweden, the annual influx of thousands of letters addressed to Santa Claus is a heart-warming tradition that PostNord, the country’s postal service, has diligently maintained for over a century.
In 2022 alone, PostNord received approximately 16,000 letters intended for Father Christmas, each filled with the hopes and dreams of children from around the world.
From imaginative addresses like “Lapland” and “Reindeer Land” to the more whimsical “Santa’s Igloo,” the letters are not only opened and read but also receive thoughtful responses from the postal service.
A selection of these letters, dating back to the 1890s, is preserved in the archives of the Postmuseum in Stockholm, forming a unique collection that reflects the evolving wishes of children over the years.
In these letters, toys, pets, and books have consistently topped the wish lists of children, both in the past and present. A notable shift is observed in the modesty of wishes, with historical letters often featuring simpler requests compared to the more extensive lists seen today. The museum’s archives hold handwritten letters containing charming questions for Santa, showcasing the curiosity and innocence of young minds.
The tradition extends beyond mere correspondence, as PostNord encourages a sense of magic and belief. Every letter with a return address receives a personalized reply, expressing Santa’s gratitude, mentioning the festive preparations, and inspiring children to believe in themselves, emphasizing that dreams can come true.
This enchanting practice is not limited to the younger demographic, as even a 20-year-old from Taiwan participated in this year’s batch of letters. Sweden’s PostNord, through its enduring commitment to this timeless tradition, adds a touch of joy and magic to the holiday season, connecting generations through the simple act of expressing hopes and dreams to Santa.