If Easter is a special holiday for you, make sure to know more about how other countries celebrate this feast to make it more special. In this blog, you will discover very strange and new activities related to the Easter holiday in 13 different countries. Don’t bear the burden of traveling, here you will travel and discover the world at Easter while you are in your place.
Florence people celebrate Easter by Scoppio del Carro, which means “explosion of the cart.” This is a 350-year-old tradition that happens just in Easter by wearing colorful customs from the 15th century. They prepare an ornate cart with fireworks in the streets and the Archbishop of Florence light the fuse during Easter mass to have a wonderful display with fireworks. This tradition returns to the First Crusade looking for a good harvest.
In Finland, Easter is much like Halloween. Children go and wear the Easter witch costumes with long skirts, red paintings in their checks, and colorful headscarves. Then they go asking for chocolate eggs when they are carrying willow twigs with colorful feathers at their end. In some areas in Finland, people set fire at Easter, following the belief that the fire keeps witches away from them.
Haux town in France has an Easter tradition that dates back to the reign of Napoleon when he passed by this town and ordered a giant omelet for his huge army. So people in France each year prepare a giant omelet in Easter that contains 4500 eggs to feed about 1000 people.
Greek people have an Easter tradition called “pot throwing” that happens on Corfu Island. They start on the Holy Saturday to throw all the earthenware (pots and pans) from the windows and smash it in the streets. This tradition has two sources, the first is taking this tradition from Venetians, as they throw the old items in the New Year. The other refers to welcoming spring by throwing the old pots and preparing new ones for spring corps.
In the Vatican, the pope recalls the Way of the Cross on Good Friday by preparing a hug cross with big lights and presenting the 14 Stations of the Cross in several languages. The holy mass starts on Saturday evening, then the Easter Sunday mass with lots of visitors in St. Peter’s Square.
Verges town in Spain has a tradition called “dansa de la mort” or “death dance” which is performed on Holy Thursday. Everyone gets dressed in skeleton costumes and walk in the streets in a big procession ends with scary skeletons holding boxes of ashes. The procession starts dancing after midnight for 3 hours till the early morning.
“Sprinkling” or “Ducking Monday” is an Easter tradition that happens in Hungary on Monday. Boys used to sprinkle perfume or perfumed water on women’s heads, but now they just spray cologne, perfume or clean water and ask the girl for a kiss. This tradition depends on the belief that the water can clean, heal and fertilize girls.
In the South Lawn of the White House, they play the Easter Egg Roll game every year for over 130 years. The way to play this game is to roll colored boiled eggs with large spoons, the winner is the one who reaches the finish line with the egg first. Today, this event has many other games like egg hunt games and musical groups with lots of crafts and sports.
Australian people decided in 1991 to replace the easter rabbit with the easter bilby, They consider rabbits a symbol of the destruction and devastation of crops and farmlands. bilbies are a mix of rabbits and mice as they have big ears like rabbits but with long noses like mice. This mixture resulted in a very nice but endangered animal.
Jerusalem is the place where Christ was crucified. The Christians on good Friday get the same path the Christ took while going to the cross to remember his pain. Then on Easter Sunday in the Garden Tomb, they pray the Easter mass where Christ was buried.
Lots of England communities used to perform a tradition called “Morris dancing” since the middle ages. In this dance, people wear hats with bells and wave ribbons around the ankles during the dance in the streets. People in the UK believe that this dancing brings good luck and welcomes spring spirit.
Easter in Germany is more colorful and enjoyable, as you find the colored eggs laid on trees in large numbers. This can turn the green trees to rainbow trees all around the city, which will give you a sense of joy to enjoy Easter celebrations.
Egyptian Christians celebrate Easter by praying the holy mass on Saturday evening. Then on Monday, the whole Egyptians celebrate a day called Sham el-Nessim. On this day, people go out in gardens to welcome the spring by playing with colored eggs and eating specific kinds of food, Renga, and Feseekh (salted fish), and having an enjoyable day.
Now you can visit Egypt during the Easter break and enjoy the spring-time in gardens with fresh air. Don’t forget to try a portion of totally new food (Renga and Feseekh).
Knowing how other people celebrate the same feast is a large part of cultural exchange. Don’t stop just knowing, and visit these countries at Easter time to enjoy trying their strange rituals.
Further Reading: Check the Easter packages to Egypt