Easter in Greece is one of the most significant religious holiday for the Greeks and all Orthodox worldwide. This year both the orthodox and catholic christian Easter are celebrated on the same date. Therefore many Europeans are also expected in Greece to experience the traditional Easter in Greece.
Easter is also accompanied with the blooming of nature and is more evident in the greek countryside. If you had never experienced Easter in Greece this year is the ideal time, since all Europe celebrates at the same time.
The festivities for the greek easter begin a week before Easter Sunday and everyday leads to the spiritual climax of easter day.
Among the traditions is fasting throughout the week which makes it a cleansing experience for the body and soul. Every evening people gather at the churches where mysticism and byzantine hymens intensify Holy week.
Orthodox fasting excludes all meat products and their derivatives such as cheese and milk. On Holy Friday also excludes olive oil. It sounds heavy but there are many delicasies and combinations based on the mediterranean diet that makes it delicious and not painfull at all. The menu consists of lobster, shrimbs, octopus, beans, green salads, many fruits and vegetables along with greek wine or ouzo. These are the things that greeks eat during the Holy week but they also prepare the food for easter such as easter cookies, Easter eggs, tsoureki (sweet bread) and many more delicasies.
Depending on which part you choose to visit you can see different kind of festivities which make Easter in Greece even more interesting. The symbolic resurrection of Jesus Christ is announced in churches on the midnight of Saturday accompanied with the “Holy Fire” which comes from Jerusalem on a charter flight. Along with the ending of the mass of the midnight Saturday ends also the fasting, and celebrations begin.
Easter Sunday is usually a sunny day which gives the opportunity for friends and families to get together to eat, drink and dance.