Easter is undoubtedly one of the biggest holidays -if not the biggest one- in Greece! However, this year’s Easter will be very different than usual for everyone because of the difficult situation the world is going through right now. But that won’t last forever. People will celebrate again and there’s no better place to celebrate the Greek Orthodox Easter, other than the Greek Islands and especially Antiparos. Next year will be the best opportunity for you to book a lovely Antiparos home and live this wonderful, spiritual experience to the fullest.
Easter comes when Spring is in full bloom and you’ll find that during that time, Antiparos will be particularly beautiful and fully alive. Businesses are open and the people there will be full of happiness and anticipation for the great holiday, while also being ready to welcome you with open arms and let in you in on the centuries-old traditions of the Greek Orthodox Easter. If you wish, you’ll have the chance to leave your Antiparos home for a while and participate in the customs and celebrations, which you will fondly remember forever.
What to do
Once you’re there, you can taste or -why not? – even make yourselves the traditional, sweet and delicious type of brioche that’s named Tsoureki. The three braids of the bread represent the Christian trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit). Another fun, but also really important, activity you could take part in, is the dyeing of the eggs! The eggs are dipped into red paint symbolizing the spiritual regeneration coming with the resurrection of Jesus.
On Good Friday, the atmosphere is solemn and you’ll have the chance to visit one of the 50 churches of the Island and watch the procession of Epitaphios, a wooden, canopied bier which represents the tomb of Jesus, which is decorated with a plethora of flowers and is carried around the streets of Antiparos at night, before going back to the church. It’s a tradition that will leave you in-awe and Agios Nikolaos church in the town’s square is one of best ones for you to visit for that reason. The following Saturday, the Holy Saturday, at midnight the bells ring, proclaiming the resurrection of Jesus. Fireworks light up the sky and people are on the churches, with their Easter candles, ready to receive the Holy Light, a flame that is said to light up on its own in the tomb of Jesus, in Jerusalem. Afterwards, people return to their houses, where they “draw” 3 crosses with the light, at the top of their doors.
And then, it’s time for the big dinner! People eat the traditional soup, Magiritsa which ends the 40-day fast that Greek Orthodox people have been doing during this period. Now everyone can enjoy meat, salads, drinks and other celebratory delicacies, while of course you shouldn’t miss the cracking of the red eggs! People crash their eggs together and whoever’s left un-cracked is the winner and is said to be blessed with good luck until the end of the year! You can always try those beautiful traditions in one of the Island’s quaint taverns or in the comfort of your Antiparos home. The celebrations continue until Easter Sunday and Easter Monday.
Whatever you decide to do, one thing is for sure… Easter in Antiparos will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience that will remain in your heart as the sweetest memory!