Easter is right around the corner and with it, a host of religious and cultural festivities that celebrate new life. The four international Easter traditions below just skim the surface of the interesting and unique activities that take place worldwide to commemorate the holiday.
In the southwestern city of Haux, France, Easter eggs take huge precedent in the city—literally. Chefs arrive at the town’s main square to build a bonfire and fry up an omelet large enough to feed the entire town. The dish can feed up to 1,000 people and has been sized at over 10 feet in diameter. The gargantuan breakfast food requires 5,211 eggs, 21 quarts of oil and 110 pounds each of bacon, onion and garlic.
The annual omelet-making has been a tradition for just three decades but it stems back to Napoleon’s reign—the general demanded a giant egg dish be cooked for his soldiers as they passed through the French countryside.
The Greek Orthodox Church
places incredible importance on Easter and it’s one of the most tradition-filled holidays within the church. However, on the Greek island of Corfu, people break from mainland convention to take part in their own festivities.
One such practice? Tossing water-filled clay pots from their balconies.
Throwing these pots, also known as botides, originates from the Italian Venetians who welcomed in the New Year by throwing old household objects like tables, chairs and yes—pots—from their windows in an “out with the old, in with the new” approach. This New Year’s Day event still takes place throughout Italy but the Grecian islanders are the only ones who do this for Easter.
Ayachucho, in central Peru, has 33 churches—one to symbolize each year of Jesus’ life—and the mountainous city reverently celebrates the 10 days leading up to Easter with constant religious and secular activities.
Some of these celebrations include music, dancing, ritual processions and bull running. Children carry bottles to collect holy water from the seven temples in the city. Colorful tapestries depicting religious imagery are sold in makeshift markets.
It’s an exciting week and the festivities end on Easter Sunday with a massive feast. Comprised of 12 traditional dishes, some favorites include chiriuchu (roasted guinea pig), papa rellena (stuffed potatoes) and chicha (a purple corn drink).
Because Australian bunnies have a bad reputation for destroying crops and gardens, children on Easter Sunday get their chocolate eggs from the Easter Bilby, an endangered and indigenous rodent.
The big Easter event Down Under, however, is Pancake Tuesday (also known as Shrove Tuesday). Celebrated weeks before Lent, this day is hugely important to Australia’s Easter traditions and marks the time for pancakes to be eaten in profusion.
Easter is a big holiday for many people and communities around the world have special celebrations particular to their country, city or home. If you observe Easter, what do you do to celebrate?