Easter in Malta is one of the most important and primary religious feasts. With a church for every day of the year – a total of 365 churches to go around, it’s no wonder you will find something happening in every town and village you visit. Here are some of the traditions you can immerse yourself into when visiting the archipelago during Easter.
Join a pilgrimage
A widespread local tradition which can get you into the Maltese Easter spirit is to visit seven churches. On Holy Thursday, Christians spend their evening in prayers as they visit seven different churches. The three cities, with one of the cities housing our hotel, are perfect for this. With several churches located close to each other, you can walk from one church to the other, stopping at each to recite prayers at the Altars of Repose. Otherwise, you can join in the adventure and experience the Maltese countryside by night by following the pilgrimage that starts in Siggiewi. Follow the candle lit trail up the steep hill to the imposing Laferla Cross, which is symbolic to the Way of the Cross.
Discover the churches
Churches in Malta are always worth a visit, but during the Easter period they become a focal point. You will find grand displays of the Altars of Repose, an overpowering incense that fills the air, walls draped with black and purple and chanting in the background. We’re sure that this background will transport you to a different world and time in history. And you can also enjoy the beautiful streets surrounding the churches, which are usually decked out in religious pavilions, crosses and holy pictures hung on several private residences as well.
Participate in a procession
If you’re in Malta on Good Friday, visiting one of the many processions is a must. The procession is a sombre but impressive display of life-size statues representing the Passion of Christ, which are paraded through the village streets, reminiscent of a funeral march with live music played by the local band club. Participants dressed as biblical characters also join in the procession.
Visit local exhibitions
Displays from the Last Supper can be seen all over the towns and villages across the Island. These are usually setup by independent enthusiasts and should not be missed. Admire the elegant statues of religious artworks in salt and rice, or the life-size or scale representations of the Last Supper, sometimes also accompanied by a presentation setting the scene and taking you back to biblical times.
The festivities come to an end on Easter Sunday with the joyous ringing of church bells. There are also several processions held in different towns throughout the day with the statue of the Risen Christ. One of the day’s highlights will be lunch with family and friends, followed by a nice piece of figolla – a traditional almond-filled pastry prepared only at Easter.
If you are planning your Easter getaway to Malta, book your room at the Cugó Gran Macina and experience these beautiful traditions first hand.
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