How Eastern Europeans Celebrate Easter

Easter is the first major holiday of spring and, for many Christians, is considered the holiest day of the year. Everything centers around new birth. Eggs, green vegetables, and spring lamb figure prominently in the Eastern European cuisine. Here is how Eastern Europeans celebrate Easter by country.

  • 01 of 08

    Bulgarian Easter Traditions

    a small box of Easter Bread
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    Bulgaria is a largely Orthodox Christian country along with the rest of the Balkans (except for Croatia) and, as such, religious devotions figure prominently in the Easter holiday. During Holy Week, some very devout Bulgarians attend church every day.

  • 02 of 08

    Croatian Easter Traditions

    A giant Croatian Easter egg outside Zagreb cathedral
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    Easter observances begin on Palm Sunday and continue throughout Holy Week. In many towns, there are ceremonies and processions every night. In the coastal towns of Dalmatia, neighborhood associations put on traditional costumes and sing ancient hymns. There are reenactments from the Bible and a blessing of the city gates.

  • 03 of 08

    Czech Easter Traditions

    A trio of skewered hams over a wood fire grill
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    Kerry Kubilius says, "Easter in the Czech Republic is a festive time of year. Colorfully decorated eggs and other traditions give everyone, including visitors, something to look forward to. Easter markets in Prague are set up in the weeks preceding the holiday."

  • 04 of 08

    Lithuanian Easter Traditions

    A close-up of a large collection of Easter eggs
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    Celebrations for Easter or velykos in Lithuania actually begins on Palm Sunday with the start of Great Week.

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  • 05 of 08

    Polish Easter Traditions

    Close-Up Of Lamb Shape Cookie Held By Woman
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    After the self-denial of Lent, all the stops are pulled for the glorious celebration of Christ's Resurrection -- Easter.

  • 06 of 08

    Russian Easter Traditions

    Close view of Easter cake and eggs on a table
    Mike Zubrenkov / EyeEm / Getty Images

    Kerry Kubilius says, "Easter in Russia is one of the most important Russian holidays. The Russian Orthodox Church celebrates Easter according to the Orthodox calendar, and it can occur in April or May. Like many countries in Eastern Europe, Russians celebrate Easter with decorated eggs and special foods and customs."

  • 07 of 08

    Serbian Easter Traditions

    Red Easter eggs on plates
    tanjica perovic photography / Getty Images

    First and foremost, Easter is the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ with many church services held. But it's also the opportunity to break the strict Orthodox Lenten fast with great quantities of food.

  • 08 of 08

    Ukrainian Easter Traditions

    Close-up of hands painting an Easter egg
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    Easter is the most solemn and important religious holiday of the year, even surpassing Christmas. Preparations are made weeks in advance and the cooking of ritual foods for the blessed Easter basket begins well before Holy Thursday (after which no work is done), but not a morsel is eaten until Easter morning.