Find out how Easter is celebrated in Calabria 


Easter in Calabria is one of the most important religious periods of the year.

It marks the beginning of warm-season and outdoor activities.

Popular town festivals, religious rites and processions are just some of the events organized during this particular period.

There are traditions that have been passed on through generations.

Easter celebrations begin the previous Sunday (Domenica delle Palme).

On this day it is common to see families leaving the church with blessed olive branches.

The Holy Week begins during which various rites are held. 

This is usually a sober week and is considered a time of penance.

The Battenti

The Battenti are men dressed in a white tunic and wearing a traditional hood who during Holy Week, and especially on Good Friday walk the streets striking their bodies violently, to the point of bleeding, as a sign of penance.

This tradition dates back to 1473 but it is not a accepted by the church therefore, they are not allowed to enter religious sites.

battenti easter calabria

The "Affruntata"

The Affruntata is an important religious rite practiced in Catholicism in different towns of Calabria on Easter Sunday and Easter Monday.

Basically, statues of Jesus, Mary, and Saint John are carried throughout the streets of the town and joined together to symbolize the “meeting” after Jesus Christ’s resurrection.

easter in calabria

The “Pupazze”

This tradition takes place in the town of Bova in the Province of Reggio Calabria on Palm Sunday.

The tradition consists in carrying in procession the great female figures (puppets) made by the inhabitants of the charming village of Bova.

The puppets are done with olive branches and "dressed" with flowers and fruits.

pupazze calabria

Cuzzupa, a traditional Calabrian Easter cake

It's called Cuzzupa and it's a typical Easter cake of the Calabrian tradition.

Served as a dessert, this cake symbolizes the end of the Lenten fast and the resurrection of Christ.

It is made with whole eggs, which are said to bring good fortune.

Easter Monday: Pasquetta

In Italy, Easter Monday is known as Pasquetta (little Easter).

It's a public holiday, a day off for schools and most businesses are closed.

At Pasquetta, Italians like to take a trip into the countryside for a picnic, enjoy the nice spring weather with family and friends and play games including egg races.

pasquetta calabria

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