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20 Mar

The most spectacular Easter celebrations around the world

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good friday trapani

good friday trapani

The most spectacular Easter celebrations  around the world

The most spectacular Easter celebrations

All around Sicily  kids are getting excited about Easter Egg hunts, participating in their schools

For us, Easter is also the first school holidays since the Christmas break and a time we like to travel and getaway over the long weekend with our families and enjoy the last warm days before winter arrives. Easter also signals the arrival of Spring, and many pagan traditions that used to mark the arrival of the “beautiful season” have been incorporated into the religious festivities.

In the western Sicily

Probably the most renowned religious manifestations of devotion in Sicily are the “Mysteries” of Trapani on Good Friday, in which the townsmen carry statues through the streets. Each statue represents one of the stations of the cross and are all made by the various local guilds. Thousands of Sicilians line the streets awaiting the arrival of the Virgin Mary “in search” of her son.

While this may be the norm in Sicily, Easter is celebrated around the world in a surprising variety of ways, with traditions different from country to country according to their ethnic and cultural origins

The most spectacular Easter celebrations

1, France

In the town of Haux, a giant omelet made with 4,500 eggs that feeds 1,000 people is served up in the town’s main square. The story goes, when Napoleon and his army were traveling through the south of France, they stopped in a small town and ate omelets.

Napoleon liked his so much that he ordered the townspeople to gather their eggs and make a giant omelet for his army the next day.

2. Seville, Spain

One of the biggest Easter celebrations takes place in Seville, where 52 different religious brotherhoods parade through the streets manifesting the crucifixion, with thousands watching the daily processions of marching bands and decorated candle lit floats heaving with Baroque statues illustrating the Easter story.

3. Florence, Italy

A huge, decorated wagon is dragged through the streets by white oxen until it reaches the cathedral, and when Gloria is sung inside the cathedral Archbishop sends a dove-shaped rocket into the cart, igniting a large fireworks display.

4. Germany

Whilst in many countries Easter eggs are hidden and children hunt for them, in Germany Easter eggs are displayed on trees and prominently in streets, with some of the trees having thousands of multi color eggs hanging on them.

If you are planning a trip to Sicilia specifically to experience the festivities, here is a list of the ten most spectacular celebrations of the island.

I Diavulazzi di Pasqua at Adrano, Catania

Gli Incappucciati at Enna

Pashkët at Piana degli Albanesi in the province of Palermo

I giudei at San Fratello in Messina province

 La Settimana Santa at Caltanissetta

Activities on Good Friday 2019 in Trapani

Trapani’s Misteri procession re-enacts scenes from the passion of Christ, with a procession of detailed heavy wooden statues depicting different scenes from this eternal story. The celebration at Trapani is probably the most well known of the Misteri based festivities, which occur through out the island, simply because of the dimensiona of the statues and the amazing artistry of the figures which are extremely emotive and detailed.

The Misteri, depict the passion of Christ and the symbolic elements also associated with the story. Side by side with the artworks are objects like spears, hammers and a crown of thorns in an extended religious metaphor, like an elaborate Mystery play from the Middle Ages.

The festivities in Trapani begin on the Tuesday after Palm Sunday with the procession of the Modonna of the Pieta’ known locally as the Massari. An artwork which dates back to the sixteenth century which is displayed within an ornate golden frame. The canvas depicts the Maria Addolorata who is looking to her left on a dark background with many holy relics.

The week before Easter is full of events. The rituals begin on Tuesday and Wednesday with the processions of two pictures: that of Madonna dei Massari and that one of the Madonna del Popolo. Tuesday is important for the traditional visit to the Holy Sepulchre but the Good Friday is the most awaited day: the Mystery Plays take place and get people’s, not only from Trapani, attention. The event is a long procession which represents the Christ’s Passion; it is accompanied by a funeral march and by the sound of the ciaccole, which beat the time of the eighteen groups of statues of the XVIII century. They are made up with wood, canvas and glue; they are carried on men’s shoulders among the streets of the city centre and followed by the statues of Christ and Madonna. The procession goes across the streets also during the night, between the Good Friday and the Saturday.

Trapani Egadistar Apartments


Here is the complete calendar:

  • Tuesday: Procession of the Mother Pietà dei Massari (starting from the church of Purgatory);
  • Wednesday:
    Procession of the Pietà Pietà del Popolo (from the church of Maria SS.Addolorata);
    Procession of the Pietà Pietà dei Massari (from the chapel in Piazza Lucatelli with return to the church of Purgatory);
  • Thursday: Preparation of the Sacred Groups of the Mysteries: silver, lighting and flowers;
  • Friday:
    Descent of the Cross (Chiesa S. Maria del Gesù);
    Procession exit of the Mysteries;
    Chiesa Anime Sante of Purgatory, Piazza Purgatorio;
  • Saturday: Re-entry of the Procession of the Mysteries;
  • Sunday: Procession of the Risen Christ.


The most spectacular Easter celebrations

Departure and arrival point: Chiesa del Purgatorio


When: Good Friday


Length: about 24 hours

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