A world of Easter holidays!
Easter is approaching and we all know what that means - a double Bank Holiday coupled with school holidays. Not forgetting that, for many, there is a distinct religious aspect to this time but with a four day weekend to play with, it's pretty much a perfect time for a chance to take a break and jet away.
That's especially the case as there are a variety of celebrations happening across the world over the weekend. A lot of places see Easter as a very important time culturally and treat it accordingly. Many of these festivals have evolved from religious rituals but, whether cultural or social, they've become global attractions in their own right.
The Flexicover team presents some options here that might pique your interest for an Easter getaway this year.
New Orleans, USA
For Southern comfort at Easter, head down to Louisiana! After Mardi Gras in January/February, it's their biggest annual event with the Historic French Quarter Parade being the centrepiece of the weekend. Cheer as convertibles and carriages of southern belles and Easter bunnies pass by, giving out waves and goodies to those watching on the sidelines. Brunches, too, have become traditional, to mark the end of Lent with nothing short of a feast. Foodies should ready themselves for American-sized portions of French toast, buttermilk pancakes or shrimp'n'grits. With celebrations all weekend, it's a must for those who enjoy a lively holiday.
Never mind a weekend event - the seven day Semana Santa (Holy Week) in Seville definitely stretches out the festivities. The Andalusian capital is well-known for its oranges, wine and, most recently, as a Game of Thrones location but the daily processions by the various cofradias are another of its unique selling points, dressed as they are all in white. From Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday, candlelit floats pass through its centre, containing elaborate pasos or scenes from the Easter story, reminiscent of the medieval touring Passion plays. So much detail goes into these that they're considered part of Seville's art and intangible heritage.
St Petersburg, Russia
To us chocoholics, there might only be one type of Easter egg - the edible kind. Yet there's a multi-million pound type too, as the world-famous Fabergé eggs originated as Imperial Easter gifts. Between 1887 and 1917, 65 eggs are known to have been made and 57 survive (and 43 out of the 50 Imperial eggs). The largest collection is on display at the Fabergé Museum in St Petersburg, opened in 2013 by oligarch Victor Vekselberg, who bought 15 en masse for a cool $100m to save them being hidden in private collections. Make the most of this act of philanthropy by visiting the museum, housed in the central Shuvalov Palace.
The Processione dei Misteri (Procession of the Mysteries) is both Italy's longest procession, running for around 24 hours, and its longest-running Easter tradition, clocking in at over 400 years to date. Traversing the entirety of the coastal city on Easter Friday, the 20 floats carry lifelike statues that depict scenes of the Passion and death of Christ, with each provided by a different guild. Unfortunately, Sicily's most famous Easter event is a little too popular for its own good as the mainly residential area groans under the influx of visitors. Because of this, it's advisable to book in advance and there are good deals for those who do.
One for the whole family, the French-Canadian province of Quebec knows exactly how to make Easter fun. Not only do they go big with Easter brunches but they also place a huge emphasis on kids, with baby animals popping up everywhere ahead of Easter weekend. For starters, families can punctuate visits to Les Galeries de la Capitale and Fleur de Lys, two major shopping malls, with a visit to their mobile zoos. The kids help feed hens, bunnies, sheep and ponies, while adults peruse the many chocolate shops like Laura Secord or the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory - a definite win-win situation for both kids and big kids at heart.
Wherever you choose to head to this Easter, we at Flexicover are committed to providing you with the highest level of protection to ensure that you are safe and secure, 24 hours a day.