Disclaimer: Due to COVID-19 concerns, many events might be canceled, postponed, or changed into limited versions, sometimes at very short notice. Please check with event organizers directly for the latest updates.
Easter celebration in Bermuda runs over three days from Good Friday to Easter Sunday. However, preparations start on Thursday if not earlier. Local women are busy cooking traditional Easter treats—codfish cake served on hot cross buns. Both are enjoyed separately throughout the year and are served together only on Easter. Meanwhile, the rest of the family are occupied with kite making, as Good Friday in Bermuda is also known as the kite day.
Hundreds of people head to Horseshoe Bay to have fun at the Kite Festival. Everyone may join the festivities and fly their kites, but the focus is on home-made kites—the largest, smallest and most beautiful ones get awards. They say the tradition of kite flying on Good Friday was initiated started by a teacher who wanted to demonstrate the essence of Jesus's ascension after crucifixion and resurrection.
Bermuda Lily is a symbol of local Easter. You'll find hundreds and thousands of these delicate flowers on Easter Day. They are widely used as decorations for the Easter Sunday church services. Sunrise services at the scenic spots overlooking the ocean are very popular across the island, especially at dawn at Horseshoe Bay. Those who can't get up so early will also find Easter Sunday services with the more traditional starting time.
Other Easter traditions include lively performances by the iconic Bermuda Gombeys which combine masquerades, dancing, and drumming. This tradition reflects the island's blend of African, Caribbean and British cultures. The Gombeys traditionally perform on Good Friday and other important occasions throughout the year.
In the past, the island could boast another Easter tradition which was Bermuda Easter Parade. It featured lots of fine floats, many of which were lavishly ornated with Easter lilies. However, the event ended generations ago and the last time it took place was in the 1970s. Perhaps, someday it will be brought back to life.