5 Funeral Traditions From Around the World

Monday, June 6, 2022

Funeral planning is not something anyone wants to think about. Unfortunately, there were 364,312 funerals performed in the United States alone in 2020. 

However, funerals do not have to be a somber affair. Some cultures choose to use it as a celebration of life compared to a traditional funeral. 

So, what are some of the most unique funeral traditions around the world? These are five that stand out. 


Ghana has one of the more interesting funeral traditions out there because their country focuses on customizing a person's coffin towards the work or hobby they did in their life. 

One example could look like a soccer ball for a person that played professionally. Another case could be having fruits and vegetables that a farmer harvests. 

These coffins are then carried around with loud drumming and dancing from friends and loved ones to celebrate their lives and offer gifts to other spirits. 


Tibet goes in the opposite direction from Ghana's traditions. They send the dead's remains high up into the mountains. Before they do this, they chop bodies up into pieces and leave those pieces up in the mountains for the vultures to eat. 

It is a custom that has been around this culture for a long time, dating as far back as thousands of years ago. 


Unlike the other destinations listed above, the Philippines has many different cultural funeral traditions depending on what region you go to. 

One area that stands out among their traditions is the Cebu area. Here, they dress their kids in red rather than black at a funeral to help keep ghosts at bay.

Another example is the Benguet, located in the northwest Philippines. Here, they blindfold the dead and leave the bodies in the front of their houses. 

South Korea 

This country tends to go a different route rather than burying or chopping up bodies. Here, they go more towards the cremation route but take it a step further. 

South Korea not only cremates their bodies but also turns the remaining ashes into beads. 

This is partly because there is not enough space to bury the dead in certain parts of this country. So instead, they use this method always to have their loved ones nearby. 


Something that Madagascar does more than other countries is continuing to preserve the dead years after the people are gone. Once about every five years, the remaining bones are sprayed with perfume. 

After that is done, family members will dance around the bones to celebrate ancestry. 

Discover More Funeral Traditions Around the World

These are just five of the more unique funeral traditions around the world. If you are trying to plan a funeral, perhaps you might take inspiration from one of these customs. 

To get more information about unique funeral planning, book a consultation here today. 

At Schumacher & Benner Funeral Home and Crematory, we want to take care of you and your family in any way possible. Our services include traditional funeral services, celebration of life services, cremations, selection of memorial and headstones, and more.  

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