In the UK, schools close for about two weeks at Easter time. Read on to find out more about how Easter is celebrated in Britain.

What does it mean?

Easter is a spring festival of new life. As a pagan tradition, it is the beginning of growth and new life after the cold, winter months. The name comes from the Anglo-Saxon goddess of the dawn and spring – Eostre. For Christians, Easter celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ and practising Christians attend special church services at Easter time. Easter celebrates life and rebirth, which is why we see lots of symbols of new life and fertility at Easter, like eggs, chicks and rabbits.

When is it?

Unlike Christmas, Easter isn’t on the same date each year. It takes place on the first Sunday after the first full moon of spring. Schoolchildren and students in the UK have about a two-week holiday at Easter time, which is almost as long as the Christmas holiday. It’s also the first public holiday after Christmas and everyone looks forward to their Easter break as a moment to relax, have a short holiday or visit family and friends.

Chocolate eggs

For most British children, Easter means chocolate Easter eggs. The shops are full of bright Easter displays decorated with chicks, rabbits and flowers, all with the objective of selling chocolate eggs in huge numbers. And it works! 90 million chocolate eggs are sold in the UK each year and each child receives on average eight chocolate eggs.

However, the eggs are sold in cardboard boxes and sometimes there’s more packaging than chocolate! Also, some people believe that too much chocolate is eaten and most doctors and dentists would advise people to eat Easter eggs in moderation.

Other 'egg-straordinary' traditions

In the UK, chocolate is definitely the most popular way to enjoy eggs at Easter. But there are some less sugary traditions, too. Chickens’ eggs are painted and decorated to give as presents, and eggs are also hidden for children to find as part of an 'egg hunt'. Some places even hold competitions to see who can roll an egg down a hill without it breaking!

There are other special foods too. Hot cross buns are typical cakes that are made at Easter time. They are spiced bread rolls with raisins and they always have a cross shape on top. They are delicious toasted with butter.


Is Easter celebrated where you live?


RehinaParker's picture
RehinaParker 21 March, 2013 - 15:26

ellen i am a muslim but i celebrate because i like to celebrate easter...... where are you from?

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ellen's picture
ellen 21 March, 2013 - 13:45

Hi RehinaParker.So İ do i like chocolate.Christians celebrate this holiday in our country
We Muslims do not celebrate Easter for that. İt does not know about?

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Demy's picture
Demy 20 March, 2013 - 13:03

The Easter in Ukraine it's very big holiday so we always celebrate it hapilly.
Family table on this bright day, prepared with special solemnity and always decorated with flowers. The main place on the holiday table belongs Easter and krashankam, laid on greens. In addition, every woman prepares traditional and favorite family holiday dishes
There are a number of Easter fun. Most popular now - a game in the chops when the children, and not just choose Easter eggs and knock them on one another. Whose broken, he is a loser. So i am weiting for this holiday... It 's will be very sunny day for ukrainian people)

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gawel's picture
gawel 28 March, 2013 - 13:40

The people look for presents .The most important festiwal is Christmas .We go to church with Easter baskets.On Easter Monday We have śmingus dingus and We splash water on girls.

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Gigy's picture
Gigy 25 March, 2013 - 19:22

I live in Czech Republic. Boys plait sheaf willow withe and they whip grils and woman with them. Grils give him painted Easter egg for it. It is nice tradition, but sometimes little painful.

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JoEditor's picture
JoEditor 28 March, 2013 - 13:16

Hi gigy and golisek,
Before we published gigy's comment we had a look on the internet and read that this strange tradition for Easter Monday appears to be true. Can you tell us more about it? Can any of our other users tell us about any Easter traditions from your countries? 
Best wishes, Jo (LearnEnglish Teens Team) 

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igetbored's picture
igetbored 13 April, 2014 - 17:47

We don't celebrate easter in our country but we have Children's Day.It's really fun.If it'S a school day we always play games,do shows and do very fun stuff like these,but ı actually prefer easter.I really like the chocolate and the colorful eggs because it makes the country colorful.We sometimes celebrate Easter in our English classes.
Best Wishes

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