Best time to go to Budapest

Easter (Húsvét) 2024

The feast of Húsvét in Hungary is a cultural celebration involving folk arts and traditional foods

Dates: March 31, 2024

Easter (Húsvét)
Easter (Húsvét)
Easter (Húsvét)
Easter (Húsvét)
Easter (Húsvét)

Easter (Húsvét) in Hungary is a family-and-friends holiday, marked with rich folk traditions and seasonal cuisine. For easter, the city promises a bunch of amazing activities for people from all walks of life. So, let's dive into the details!


Easter in Hungary is all about the fusion of cultural and religious practices, and the country's capital, Budapest, offers a diverse array of celebrations. In order to commemorate the resurrection of Jesus Christ, Hungarians usually start their Easter celebration with church services, especially on Easter Sunday. Gathering families gather to savor a feast, which includes classic Hungarian fare like gammon, eggs and a variety of pastries, such as the well-known Easter bread, 'kalács'. The fun ritual of "locsolás," in which men spritz ladies with water or perfume on Easter Monday to represent fertility and rebirth, is one of the most beloved Easter traditions in Hungary.

Painted Easter eggs

Egg souvenirs are also aplenty at the market stalls. Egg painting is an integral tradition of Easter. It was practiced in Hungary even before the arrival of the Magyars. Eggs generally symbolize everlasting life. With the onset of Christianity, the eggs were coloured red to pay reference to the shed blood of Christ. However, over the last centuries, other paints have become equally popular, along with geometric and plant patterns, and some ancient designs with sun-wheels, chicks, and other ornaments.

Festive performances

Folk art concerts are also a significant element of the festivities. These performances supplement the festive atmosphere of the country fair and make it a more vibrant celebration.

Budapest Easter Fair (mid-January–April, 2024)

One of the most popular places to go during Easter is Budapest Easter (or Spring) Fair. It occurs at Vörösmarty Square that is also known as the Christmas market location. The market's wooden huts offer a great choice of little arts and craft souvenirs, handmade pottery, and baskets. Moreover, the craftsmen will personally demonstrate their skills of basket weaving or blacksmithing. Family crafts sessions are also on offer—you and your kids can try out beading, felting, and other hands-on activities.

Easter Food

At the Easter Market, one can also try delicious traditional foods. For the main course, you'll find goulash and stews galore. One of the very traditional dishes is lángos or "flame cake" which is made of potato-based dough served with sour cream, cheese, and garlic. Among desserts, look for some artisan marzipans, gingerbread houses, and Kürtőskalács which is a chimney cake baked on the spot—you'll love its crisp outside and a soft sugary lining. Kürtőskalács comes in varieties that range from traditional cinnamon to a more progressive variety with Nutella. Don't hesitate to savour local spirits. There will be craft beers, pálinka, wines, and also mulled wine.

Buda Castle Easter Festival

Some years witness another iconic celebration—the Buda Castle Easter Festival (Budavari Husveti Sokadalom). The festivities incorporate concerts, dance shows, local Easter foods such as milk bread or kalács, kids' games, and other family-friendly activities, and all that with a scenic background of the Buda Castle.

Easter Monday in Hollókő

One of the most colourful Easter celebrations takes place in a small village of Hollókő, around 100 km north-east of Budapest. Tradition has it that boys and men take buckets of cold water and generously sprinkle the ladies. Tourists flock to witness the mess, regardless of the huge risks of getting wet. The festivities last for the three days. In 1987, this unique celebration became a part of UNESCO World Heritage.

This tradition is observed beyond the village too, even in some urban centres. Sometimes the water is replaced with perfume. Unlike Hollókő where the festivities stretch over several days, in the rest of the country the "sprinkling" or "locsolkodás" is solely Easter Monday tradition. The pagan rite of sprinkling was originally related to fertility, so the "victims" were mostly young women about to get married. The "sprinklers" were taken as suitors. Today, all women are watered, and it's no longer a form of courtship. That seems a bit unfair, but for each sprinkling, the lady has to present a treat which is usually a chocolate Easter egg, some home-made cake, or a shot of Hungarian pálinka.

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Last updated: by Eleonora Provozin