Easter Traditions Abound
Easter is a magical time in Greece. The countryside springs to life as tree branches sprout new leaves, wildflowers blossom and villagers prepare for summer by sprucing up gardens and freshening up homes, churches and village lanes. These preparations coincide with the arrangements made for the Easter celebration, which begins weeks earlier with the start of Lent.
Holy Week is celebrated with reverence, but true pageantry peaks on Good Friday with the Epitaphios, a symbolic bier on which a wood effigy of Christ is led in candlelight procession around the parish. At Grecotel resorts, guests are invited to attend the evening mass of Good Friday and follow the Epitaph exodus with an ochre candle in hand.
The resurrection is celebrated during a candlelit service known as the Anastasis. This service, held at midnight on Holy Saturday, celebrates the resurrection of Christ. White candles are only lit after the priest proclaims, “Christos Anesti” (“Christ is Risen”) and the flame is flown over from the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. Everyone in attendance is encouraged to receive the traditional Easter “kiss of love” while a spectacular fireworks display lights up the midnight sky.
Feasts & Treats
It all culminates on Easter Sunday with an al fresco communal feast. Grecotel guests can expect the wine to flow freely, eggs to be cracked, live local music to fill the air, local shows to provide thrilling entertainment and everyone to join together in a celebration of love.
For a true taste of Greece, don’t miss out on sampling tsikoudia, a fragrant grape-based pomace brandy. Traditional treats such as tsoureki, a sweet bread made of eggs, milk and butter, and kalitsounia or lihnarakia, small cheese or herb pastries, are all must-haves as well. These delights can be found all over stores and pastry shops.
Easter in Greece wouldn’t be complete without the celebratory roasting of a series of spit-roasted lambs and other traditional meat preparations, during which people eat, drink, sing, dance and wish each other a long life.
Fun for the Whole Family
Children especially love Easter in Greece, and at Grecotel resorts, kids can have hours of fun preparing delicious Easter treats, dying eggs, decorating Easter candles, fixing Easter lamps and preparing their own Easter baskets.
Families who want to take part in the fun can also enjoy face painting, making collages with clay decorations, breaking their own chocolate eggs for the gifts that lie inside or designing Easter cards for loved ones. On top of that, there are still beach gatherings, magic and animation shows, special kids’ food corners and more to delight in.
Planning an Easter Holiday in Greece? Take your pick between Crete, Corfu, Peloponnese or Sounio as the following Grecotel hotels and resorts will be open for the season:
The avant-garde of Grecotel's exclusive resorts features a world of elegance created for your pleasure.
Corfu Imperial, Eva Palace, Daphnila Bay (Corfu)
Corfu, “Garden of the Gods”, where Grecotel occupies the most gorgeous Kommeno peninsula with three amazing resorts.
Olympia Oasis, Kyllini, Peloponnese
A luxury all-inclusive hotel, ideal for couples or family care-free vacations in Greece.
Cape Sounio, Sounio, Attica
Recognised as one of the leading hotels in mainland Greece, it is not just a resort: it's an experience.
Whichever resort you choose for your stay, Grecotel staff will help you share in the celebration. All guests are welcomed in their rooms with a tsoureki, the special bread baked for Easter Sunday breakfast, and a white candle to light at the Anastasis.