Easter is the most sacred and important celebration of the year in Greece. Religious or not, you’ll be stirred by the sentiment and traditions that define Greek Orthodox holy week in Athens.

Easter ABCs

Photo: Manos Chatzikonstantis

Photo: Eleni Veziri

Good Friday in Athens

Follow a candlelit procession through the streets

Photo: Georgios Makkas

Photo: Thomas Gravanis

Easter Saturday in Athens

See the Holy Fire arrive from Jerusalem

Photo: Georgios Makkas

Photo: Manos Chatzikonstantis

The spectacle of Midnight Mass

Photo: Manos Chatzikonstantis

Photo: Georgios Makkas

A midnight Easter feast

Photo: Eleni Veziri

Photo: Eleni Veziri

Easter Sunday in Athens

Traditional Greek Easter foods

The Easter celebrations begin early. Men gather round the spit to ‘supervise’, while the women are busy making salads and meze, setting the table with a bowl of crimson-dyed eggs. The festivities last until well after sunset, often with dancing as the full day of drinking wine and high spirits takes effect. 

In Athens, there are plenty of restaurants where you’ll be able to enjoy a traditional Easter meal, whether a bowl of tripe soup after the midnight service or a full-blown Sunday lunch. Usually, the best way to find the right place is simply to follow your nose.

 

FACTBOX
In 2019, Greek Easter falls on April 28. Carnival, Lent and Easter in Greece usually do not coincide with these moveable feasts in the Catholic and Anglican calendar. 

In Athens, there are plenty of restaurants where you’ll be able to enjoy a traditional Easter meal