Tag Archives: Easter

Easter Eggs

Easter in the Netherlands is Paas

Good Fri­day– Goede Vrijdag

Good Fri­day is pub­lic hol­i­day in the Nether­lands. How­ever that does not mean that you will get off from work. I never got the logic of that, but new places, new rules. Banks are usu­ally closed and many shops will be shut or close early on Good Friday.

Easter Eggs
© Boby Dim­itrov (Flickr: bobydimitrov)

Easter Sun­day — Paas Zondag

Easter Sun­day is a proper pub­lic hol­i­day in the Nether­lands. Some stores will be open on Easter Sun­day, but the major­ity will stay closed.
Chil­dren spend the morn­ing dec­o­rat­ing Easter eggs with brightly col­ored paint and hunt­ing choco­late eggs that have been hid­den by the Easter Mummy… uhh… make that the Easter Bunny.

Tra­di­tion­ally, an Easter brunch is held on the Sun­day. The table is dec­o­rated with the freshly painted Easter eggs, can­dles, spring flow­ers like daf­fodils, tulips and hyacinths, and a vase with dec­o­rated wil­low branches (paas­takken). Hang­ing from this ‘Easter tree’ are choco­late eggs and orna­ments like but­ter­flies, bows and bun­nies. The brunch con­sists of a Paasstol (a fruited Easter loaf with a cen­ter of soft almond paste), but­ter shaped like a lamb or bunny, bread rolls, hard boiled eggs, smoked salmon, smoked eel, and other more typ­i­cal Dutch break­fast items.
In the east almost every vil­lage lights an Easter bon­fire on some hill or high point. Peo­ple begin col­lect­ing wood for the fires weeks in advance, each area tries to outdo each other by build­ing the biggest and best fire than its neighbors.

Easter Mon­day — Paas Maandag

Easter Mon­day is a pub­lic hol­i­day in the Nether­lands and most likely you will get the day off — unless you work in one of the many stores that are open Easter Mon­day. If they are open, they com­monly open later and/or close ear­lier than usual. Pub­lic trans­port ser­vices gen­er­ally oper­ate a slightly reduced ser­vice, but there may be no pub­lic trans­port in rural areas. There are some restric­tions on the sale of alco­hol on Easter Mon­day. There may be some con­ges­tion around shop­ping malls spe­cial­ized in fur­ni­ture or gar­den sup­plies and pop­u­lar vis­i­tor attrac­tions and on routes back from pop­u­lar short break destinations.

Weather per­mit­ting, Dutch fam­i­lies often spend the day at an amuse­ment park or cycling in the coun­try­side. Bad weather East­ers often mean big busi­ness for shop­ping cen­ters and fur­ni­ture stores. Food­wise, left­overs from Easter Sun­day are usu­ally enjoyed. They may also per­form house­hold main­te­nance or sea­sonal tasks in their gar­dens, take a walk along the coast, and ride on a cycle while admir­ing the first signs of spring. Easter fires (paasvuren) are lit in some vil­lages in the north­ern and east­ern parts of the Netherlands.

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