The World is a Treasure Chest of Sleep Cultures


One thing that everyone can agree on is the fact that every human being needs sleep. However, there is a variation in the sleeping patterns or traditions across cultures around the world. A common sleeping culture in a country may be entirely alien to the citizens of another country. Some sleep traditions from around the world are unique and undoubtedly worth discussing. You may think that your sleeping habits and the culture that surrounds it aren’t anything special, but you could be surprised when you realize how they differ from those of other countries. What follows is just a few examples of the most common differences when it comes to sleeping.

Sleeping on a single bedsardines

In many countries around the world, parents sleep with their children and babies on the same bed, but in the United States of America, the United Kingdom and some parts of Europe, children have their separate rooms in which they sleep.

Using the same space for sleeping and daytime activities

In Afghanistan, every member of a family sleeps in the same room. In the morning, they simply fold up their mattress and use the same space for daytime activities.

Sleeping with clothes on

Over one-third of the UK population sleep with their clothes on. Although this habit sounds strange, it does carry its advantage, such as regulation of the body temperature.

Sleeping in a hammock


Several years ago, in Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, beds weren’t the most preferred choice of people regarding where to sleep but regardless of how comfortable hammocks were back then, today, a mattress is the in-thing. No one has brought proof that hammocks are better than mattresses.

It does not have to be TV before sleep

In most cultures and country, watching television before going to bed is quite common, but Mexico and France disagree. Mexicans prefer to pray before bed while the people of France have a good meal with friends and family before calling it a night.

Sleeping outside in the open streets


In Scandinavia, parents often put their children outside on the streets to take a nap. Even during winter, children are left outside while their parents go about their normal daily activities. Their belief is that the cold air is healthy for their children.

Children staying up till late in the night

In the United States, children are put to bed early, but in Spain and Argentina, children are allowed to stay up till late in the evening.

Individual time to observe siesta


In the Mediterranean countries including Italy and Spain, sleep is of so much importance to them that there is a time of the day during which they observe their siesta. For this period, businesses will close so everyone can have their naps.


There are of course other sleep traditions we did not cover in this article. If you are aware of any other fascinating sleep culture, don’t hesitate to share with us.