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Easter in the Basque Country

Easter in the Basque Country

Holy Week is the Christian holidays from Palm Sunday to Resurrection Sunday, although these days also include the previous Friday (Holy Friday).


Until nealy 40 years ago, most towns in Gipuzkoa preserved their processions. The Second Vatican Council and changes in daily life customs resulted in the disappearance of many of them, although nowadays little by litte they are reviving.

As for Azkoitia, celebrations in this town give the chance to enjoy calmness and time for thoughts. Meantime, onlookers will be able to enjoy the rich folklore though religious rituals that also include processions. Outstanding among the series of activities organised in Azkoitia on this occasion is the procession of the holy burial on Holy Friday evening, when the tomb of Christ and Our Lady of Sorrows is carried through the streets, accompanied by candles and frankincense to the beat of the "armatus" and The Funeral March.

Inhabitants of coastal Hondarribia celebrate Holy Friday and Resurrection Sunday with enthusiasm. On Friday at 5pm the Parish Church witnesses the solemn procession where the Christ's descent from the cross takes place, wrapped up in a 5-m cloth.

By tradition, Segura still celebrates Easter. Processions take place on Maundy Thursday and Holy Friday. Nazarenes, Penitents, Roman soldiers and musicians participate in religious marches along with floats and sculptures that have been kept over centuries in the Parish Church.


Many regions of Alava perform events and processions to recall the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ from Maundy Thursday to Resurrection Day. Among other celebrations, it is required to attend processions in Vitoria and Laguardia. Besides, on Resurrection Sunday in areas such as Salinas de Añana, Baños de Ebro and Lagrán, the "Burning of Judas" should be attended. In Moreda de Alava as well, the apostle who betrayed Jesus is burnt at the stake with Judesa, his couple.

About 300 Nazarenes or penitents accompany the Silent Procession and the Holy Burial on Maundy Thursday and Holy Friday in Vitoria-Gasteiz respectively, which has been celebrated over the past four centuries. The Resurrection Day is held in the New Cathedral, where the faithful attend the blessing of palm leaves.

Date: 03/13/2014 - 03/21/2014
Localización de Easter in the Basque Country

Easter in the Basque Country

20720 Azcoitia, Guipúzcoa, España