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Easter in Germany

Easter Traditions and Customs in Germany


Two children (6-7) collecting Easter eggs in garden, parents on background
American Images Inc/The Image Bank/Getty Images

Easter is one of the most popular holidays in Germany; after a cold and long German winter, Easter marks the eagerly anticipated season of spring.

Find out Easter Dates Germany.

German Easter Traditions

In the weeks prior to Easter, Germany gets ready for a new season: You will see spring flowers on display and many traditional "Easter trees", twigs and brushes dripping with colorfully decorated eggs. The custom of boiling and painting eggs, the symbols of new life, began in Germany; the bright colors represent sunlight and growth.

Colored Eggs and Chocolate Bunnies

Next to the Easter egg, the rabbit is probably the most popular Easter icon; the Easter bunny, symbolizing fertility, was first mentioned in German writings in the 16th century.
The bunny was then imported to America by Pennsylvania Dutch settlers, who called it "Oschter Haws" ("Easter Hare").
Around 1800, the first edible Easter bunnies were made in Germany.

Easter in Germany - Travel Tips

Germans enjoy a very long Easter weekend: Good Friday and Easter Monday are public holidays; shops, banks, and offices are closed. Trains and busses operate on a limited holiday schedule.

German schools are closed for Easter holidays (usually two weeks around the Easter weekend), and many Germans travel during these days; keep in mind that hotels, museums, and trains might be crowded, and make your reservations early.
Check the Dates for Easter in Germany here.

Celebrating Easter in Germany

If you spend the Easter weekend in Germany, memorize these two words: Frohe Ostern (FRO-Huh OS-tern) - Happy Easter!

Good Friday:
The Easter weekend in Germany begins with a quiet Good Friday (Karfreitag). Many families eat fish as their traditional Good Friday lunch.

Easter Saturday:
Easter Saturday is a great day to visit an open-air Easter market, where you can browse for artistically handcrafted Easter eggs, carved Easter decoration, and local arts and crafts.
Stop by a German bakery for a special Easter treat: a sweet cake in the shape of a lamb.

On Saturday evening, regions in the north of Germany will light Easter bonfires, chasing away the dark spirits of winter and welcoming the warm season.

Easter Sunday:
Easter Sunday is the highlight of the holiday weekend. In the early morning, parents hide baskets filled with colored, hardboiled eggs, chocolate bunnies, sweets, and little presents for the kids. Many families attend an Easter service, followed by a traditional Easter lunch, lamb, potatoes, and fresh vegetables.

More Easter Tips

Attend a traditional Easter Service in Germany
When exactly is Easter? Check our Easter Calender here.

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