People walk out of the cool waters of the Black Sea, as winter swimmers gather on a beach on the Orthodox Christmas day in the Crimean port of Yevpatoriya on Wednesday
A child from from Dofteana, northern Romania wearing a bear fur, lies on an office building’s steps while taking a break from performing a holiday season ritual in Bucharest, Romania. In pre-Christian rural traditions, dancers wearing colored costumes or animal furs, tour house to house in villages singing and dancing to ward off evil. In recent years following the economic downturn in Romania, a European Union member since 2007, the tradition has moved to Romania’s cities where dancers travel to perform the ritual for money during the Christmas and New Year’s period.
A crib made out of rubble and a Christmas tree are set on a roundabout in the regime-held Hamedieh neighbourhood in the Syrian city of Homs
Workers in Manila wrap an evenly cooked roasted calf to be delivered to a buyer. “Lechon” has always been regular fare at Philippine festivities, especially during Christmas and New Year celebrations
A man dressed as Santa Claus walks along the wall of the Old City in Jerusalem, Israel.
Thomas Peter /Reuters
A couple sits under a street lamp in a park near Christmas lights in central Tokyo on Friday
A Christmas star on top of a sales booth is pictured against the colorful morning sky at the Christmas market in Dresden, eastern Germany
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
U.S. President Barack Obama, with bags slung over his shoulders, delivers toys and gifts donated by Executive Office of the President staff to the Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling.
Leon Neal/AFP/Getty Images
Legoland model maker Katrina James (R) poses with a 3kg Lego star as she places it on top of a 8m tall Lego christmas tree at Legoland Windsor Resort, west of London. The tree is comprised of 300,000 Lego bricks and took four weeks to build.
The official White House Christmas tree, from the Crystal Spring Tree Farm in Pennsylvania, sits next to the North Portico of the White House in Washington on Friday
A couple stand under light reflected from a mirrorball installation among evergreen firs as part of the Enchanted Christmas illuminated trail at Westonbirt Arboretum in Gloucestershire, which opens officially on Friday
Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images
Visitors walk through the Christmas market at Roemerberg square on its opening day on Wednesday in Frankfurt, Germany. Christmas markets, which traditionally sell mulled wine, stollen cake, Christmas tree ornaments and other crafts and are an essential part of German Christmas tradition
Spencer Platt/Getty Images
Rockefeller Center’s Christmas tree, an 85-foot Norway spruce from central Pennsylvania, is hoisted onto a platform on Friday in New York City
Children dressed in Santa Claus costumes wave as they travel in a vehicle after attending Christmas celebrations at a church in the northern Indian city of Chandigarh
A worker checks the coal as he roasts pigs in Manila on Monday for the busy holiday season. ‘Lechon’, or roasted pig, has always been a regular fare at Philippine festivities, especially during Christmas and New Year celebrations.
Brendon Thorne/Getty Images
A Meerkat opens a wrapped present at Taronga Zoo in Sydney, Australia.
Life-size cartoon characters of the Pink Panther and Raving Rabbit (Lapin Cretin) pose on the stairs of the Élysée Palace at the end of the Élysée Palace Christmas party in Paris
Shamil Zhumatov /Reuters
A woman tries on a fur outfit at the Christmas Art Fair in Almaty, Kazakhstan, on Friday
An aquarium staff member dressed as Father Christmas hugs a zebra shark at the Sunshine International Aquarium in Tokyo.
Bethany Clarke/Getty Images)
Choristers rehearse at St Paul’s Cathedral on Monday in London, UK. Each year about 2m people visit the cathedral for services and concerts in the run-up to Christmas.