Seven Easter Traditions from Around the World

Families enjoy flying kites, 15,000-egg omelettes, or even a chocolate bilby (over a bunny).

This year, Easter will be observed on Sunday, April 4, 2021. While the holiday has both pagan and Christian origins that have influenced the way it is celebrated around the world, German immigrants brought some of the Easter traditions that we have in America with them in the 1700s when they settled here. In fact, the introduction of the Easter Bunny is due to this influence and eventually evolved into the tradition of eggs and chocolates that we enjoy today.

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A traditional Easter in modern America goes something like this: A new pastel-colored dress or suit, an Easter basket filled with eggs and candy, Sunday morning church service, followed by a delicious meal with deviled eggs, ham, and other dishes. Easter is a time to remember Christ's sacrifice and resurrection, a story of the redemption of humanity, and rebirth into a new life. That said, there are other Easter traditions enjoyed around the world that we can appreciate, too.

Large Easter Omelet

The Giant Omelette Festival in Bessières, France, seen above, involves more than 15,000 eggs that are cracked to make an omelette large enough to feed an entire square filled with people. The tradition began with Napoleon Bonaparte, who had asked for a giant omelette to feed his entire troop of men, and continues to this day thanks to the Brotherhood of the Giant Omelette.

Kite Flying

In Bermuda, people will grab their homemade kites and fly them as high as possible. The majority of this tradition takes place on Horseshoe Bay Beach but people can still fly their kites from home. Afterward, people will eat delicious codfish cakes and hot-cross buns.


The German Ostereierbaum is a small tree that is decorated for Easter with hand-painted eggs. While the history behind it is obscure, this tradition has still been carried down from family to family for hundreds of years. Hand-painted wooden eggs or blown-out glass eggs will decorate the delicate branches of a tree like magnolia or cherry blossoms.


In this Scandinavian country, children dress up like witches and go door-to-door collecting chocolate eggs from their neighbors, carrying bunches of willow twigs decorated with feathers. As they do so, the witches recite a traditional rhyme at the door: "Virvon, varvon, tuoreeks terveeks, tulevaks vuodeks; vitsa sulle, palkka mulle!" (In translation: "I wave a twig for a fresh and healthy year ahead; a twig for you, a treat for me!") In some Western parts of the country, people even burn bonfires on Easter Sunday, which is a Nordic tradition stemming from the belief that the flames ward off the "trulli" who fly on brooms between Good Friday and Easter Sunday.

Scoppio del Carro

This 350-year-old tradition in Florence, Italy, is explosive. A pair of oxen pull a wagon through the streets of Florence and stops in front of the Cathedral. But this cart is filled with fireworks that will be lit by the Archbishop for an explosion that promises good luck if all the fireworks go off as planned.

Easter Bilby

Down Under, Australians are more likely to enjoy an Easter bilby in their baskets rather than a chocolate bunny. That's because in the early '90s, Nicholas Newland from the Foundation for Rabbit-Free Australia developed the idea of the Easter bilby to raise awareness about the environmental damage caused by feral rabbits. Companies now make chocolate bilbies—or the rabbit-eared bandicoot—for Easter, oftentimes, with proceeds benefiting the endangered native animals.

Easter Re-enactments

In Mexico, the week of Holy Week features live re-enactments of Christ's capture, Judas' betrayal and the trial of Christ. But different areas of Mexico celebrate in different ways. A group of people called the Nazarenes will march down the streets of Iztapalapa and promise to fulfill a religious promise ("manda") to pay for favor granted from God.

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