With Easter around the corner, the daffodils have already popped up for an early spring and the shops are filling up with Easter eggs in the UK. Easter is celebrated all over Europe and in the Nordic countries they have some unique traditions. In Sweden and Finland, children dress up as witches and go visit houses in the hope to receive some sweets in exchange for a drawing or singing a song. They’re not the scary witches you would see at Halloween, but kinder witches called “påskkärringar” (Easter witch) with headscarves and painted red cheeks!
Homes are adorned with “påskris” which are birch twigs adorned with coloured feathers and small decorations. These are placed on dining tables and in windows and are thought to help the spring arrive after the long winter.
They do have the similar traditions of painting eggs and the Easter egg hunt. However, their version of Easter eggs are not made from chocolate but are made from cardboard. These eggs are beautifully decorated pictures and then filled with sweets and chocolate. Always resourceful, these “Påskägg” will be kept and reused for many Easters in the future.
Traditional Easter dinners will be a smörgåbord in Sweden, roast lamb in Finland and Norway. Another tradition in Norway would be to climb mountains and was the sunrise on Easter Sunday. Although it marks the end of the winter in southern parts, the snow is still around for a while in the northern parts of the Nordic countries but with the added bonus of milder temperatures and higher incidents of clear skies so you can enjoy the beautiful contrast of blue skies and white snow.
If you feel you missed out on the snow this winter, we do still have availability for some of our winter tours this season. Have a look here!