Monday, April 10, 2023 is a Czech public holiday marking Easter Monday, or Pondělí Velikonoční in Czech. Keep reading to discover some ways Easter is celebrated here in the Czech Republic.
In the Czech Republic, it is customary to celebrate the Christian holiday of Easter on the Monday after Easter. Easter is the most important Christian holiday of the year, celebrating the Resurrection of Jesus. Because of Christianity’s long history in the country, many secular celebrations for Easter have developed. Czech Easter traditions combine Christian religious practices and pagan celebrations for spring.
Perhaps the most prominent Easter Tradition in the Czech Republic is egg decorating. These eggs, called kraslice, are adorned with elaborate patterns and designs. Kraslice represent new life and rebirth, but nowadays their purpose is mainly for festive decoration. Creation of these eggs sometimes takes many days. If you don’t have the time or patience, kraslice can be found in stores and markets in Prague during Easter season.
Whipping girls and women is one of the oldest and most traditional Czech Easter celebrations. While it sounds outlandish and cruel, the practice is rather light-hearted and playful. The whips, called pomlázka, are made of braided willow branches and decorated with ribbon. Whipping girls on Easter Monday is said to bring them health and good fortune for the year to come. In return, boys receive a kraslice egg or sweet treat and grown men receive a shot of spirits. This tradition ends by noon on Easter Monday, leaving the rest of the day open for other festivites.
One of the best ways to experience Czech Easter is through one of Prague’s Easter Markets. The Easter Market in Old Town Square runs from late March to mid April of this year, and is the largest market in the city. There are also markets at Prague Castle, Wenceslas Square, and even right outside TEFL Worldwide Prague in Náměstí Míru. The markets offer music, crafts, flowers, food, traditional goods, and much more. They provide the perfect place for locals and visitors to celebrate spring and the Easter Holiday with Czech traditions.