[Translate to EN:] Ostern in Kitzbühel

28.03.2022 | Living in Kitzbühel

Experience the Easter holidays in Kitzbühel

Nature, tradition and history - Easter in Kitzbühel

When the snow glistens in the sun on the mountains, the air is filled with birdsong and the first flowers hold their colorful heads up to the sky, Lenz is moving into the country. If you look closely, here and there a nimble shadow with long ears and a little tail can be seen scurrying around in the Kitzbühel gardens. Because the blossoming landscape is not only associated with spring, but also with Easter. Under the motto "Nature, Tradition and Stories" the resurrection of Christ will be celebrated again this year in the Gamsstadt. Numerous old Easter customs and traditions are as much a part of Kitzbühel as the many colorful Easter eggs in all sizes, detailed flower arrangements and loving decorations. And the typical culinary specialties of the region are not neglected either.

But why does a rabbit actually come at Easter? Why do the bells fly to Rome and why do we give painted eggs? Basically, the rhythm of life in Tyrol has been closely linked to the Catholic church year for centuries. Even though these ties are much looser today, many church traditions are still anchored in customs and are celebrated. We have followed in the footsteps of some regional Easter traditions that you can experience during your vacation in Kitzbühel from April 08 to 24, 2022.

Person with a costume

Mystery Easter Bunny

How the cute spoonbill got its job as egg deliverer has not yet been fully clarified. In any case, the hare - like the egg - has always served as a symbol of fertility. The first written records of the Easter bunny bringing and hiding eggs date back to the 17th century. At that time, it became customary to hide Easter eggs for the children. Since the adults did not want to admit that they were behind it, the hare soon came into play. In Kitzbühel, by the way, the Easter bunnies ceremoniously drive in on Easter Sunday in a carriage and give the starting signal for the Easter egg hunt.

Colored eggs

No Easter without eggs

Whether made of chocolate, marzipan, wood or fresh from the chicken - eggs play one of the main roles at Easter. The custom is widespread not only in Kitzbühel, but throughout the country. It arose many hundreds of years ago, when eggs were dispensed with during Lent. Even if they were not eaten, the hens continued to lay diligently. At the end of the 40 days, a large amount of eggs accumulated, which had to be taken down again. So the eggs were given away. Around the 16th century, the custom of coloring the eggs with onion skins and decorating them with herbs arose. In Kitzbühel, Easter eggs are not only used for decoration purposes or eaten, but also used in playful "combat" when it is once again "Spitz auf Spitz!" Those who want to can even fight their way to becoming the city champion in egg pecking. But there is more than just pecking. At the egg shoot in Jochberg, those who show the greatest marksmanship at the shooting range can take home a few eggs as a reward.

Big easter egg

Small and large flames

The burning candle and the Easter fire are an essential part of the church celebrations on Holy Saturday. The fire symbolizes the victory of divine light over the dark days before Jesus' resurrection. In the process, the flame of the large church Easter candle breaks through the darkness. During the service, believers can also receive the light of Christ. They light their personal Easter candles, pass on the fire and thus become light bearers themselves.

Church in Jochberg

Fasting for the ears

Of course, there are no flying bells, rather they fall silent. On Maundy Thursday, the day of the Last Supper and Jesus' imprisonment, the period of mourning begins for the faithful: the altar candles are extinguished, the figures of the saints are covered with black cloths, and the bells ring for the last time. Their absence is to symbolize fasting for the ears. Until the solemn celebration of the Resurrection on Easter Sunday, the services are announced with rattles.

Fireplace

Animal pastry

Especially in view of the 40-day Lent, certain culinary customs have developed for Easter. Bread and pastries have taken a special place. The so-called "Gebildebrot" appears in a remarkably large number of forms. Not only in Kitzbühel you can find sweet pastries in animal shapes, mostly lambs, hens or rabbits. Often, on Easter Sunday, children receive shaped breads and other trifles in the "Gotlpack" - a gift basket from their godparents. These animal treats are traditionally packed into a beautiful basket beforehand together with the food of the Easter snack - from ham to eggs, bread to smoked meat - and consecrated.

Easter egg in the city center

History in miniature

As a counterpart to Christmas cribs, Lenten cribs also became very popular in Tyrol in the 19th century. They do not depict Jesus' birth in Bethlehem, but the most important stations of his suffering. Depending on the size, they begin with the entry into Jerusalem and end with Jesus' death on the cross or his entombment. The most beautiful Lenten nativity scenes are exhibited annually at Easter in Café Praxmair.

Easter in a nutshell

In front of all the sweet lambs, colorful eggs and cute Easter bunnies, the real reason why Easter is celebrated sometimes fades into the background. Christians celebrate the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus between Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday. The names of the individual feast days largely go back to biblical events or liturgical celebrations. Palm Sunday, for example, commemorates Jesus' entry into Jerusalem, where he was jubilantly welcomed with palm branches.

The following Holy Week begins with "Blue Monday" and "Blue Erchtag" (Tuesday). These names derive from the color of the ecclesiastical chasubles worn on these days. Wednesday is called "crooked Wednesday" in Tyrol. In the popular imagination, right was bent, that is, curved, because on this day Jesus' death was decided.

It would seem obvious, but Maundy Thursday has nothing to do with color, even if the tradition has developed to eat only green vegetables on this day. Originally, "green" comes from the old German word "greinen," which means to wail. Good Friday and Holy Saturday got their names from "Kara," the old word for lament. It is handed down that Jesus died at 3 p.m. on Good Friday. For this reason, it is also considered a strict fast day.

Finally, on Easter Sunday, the resurrection of Christ is celebrated. After more than 40 days of fasting, people eat copiously again, the lights and the bells return to the church - symbolically, life awakens again. Where the name Easter comes from is not completely clear. Possibly from the Indo-Germanic word for dawn - a beautiful idea.

Contact

The Kitzbühel Tourism team is at your disposal at any time!

TELEPHONE
0043 5356 66660


E-MAIL
info@kitzbuehel.com


ON SITE
Hinterstadt 18 | 6370 Kitzbühel 


Press contact

Anna Lena Obermoser
0043 5356 66660 16
​​​​​​​a.obermoser@kitzbuehel.com

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Contact

The Kitzbühel Tourism team is at your disposal at any time!

TELEPHONE
0043 5356 66660


E-MAIL
info@kitzbuehel.com


ON SITE
Hinterstadt 18 | 6370 Kitzbühel 


Press contact

Anna Lena Obermoser
0043 5356 66660 16
​​​​​​​a.obermoser@kitzbuehel.com