This Easter is smashing! Literally.
It’s the early morning of Easter Saturday 2018, sometime around 8 o’clock. While on a normal Saturday, neither the Corfiots nor most of the island’s guests would have finished their breakfast at this time, today everything is different. The roads leading towards Corfu town are jammed, the local buses are packed with both locals and tourist, whoever is lucky enough to own a boat is heading towards the old port from the sea. Four cruise ships have anchored along the docks already yesterday. In the end it will be ten thousands that gather around Platia and Liston and in the old town’s picturesque alleys near-by.
All of them, waiting. Keeping their ears wide open to not miss the crucial signal – the chimes of the churches at 11 am! The bell’s sound is the signal for every Corfiot man, woman, and child to throw pottery of all sizes from their windows and onto the streets. The spectators applaud this spectacle with loud “Bravo!” and call out in languages from Greek to German to English to Russian to Chinese and Spanish and French. This is a truly worldwide event – spectacular, thought-provoking and joyous.
The custom derived from the Venetians, who on New Year’s Day, would throw their old things from the windows in the hopes of receiving new ones for the next year. The Corfiots adopted the tradition, applying it to the most important day in their calendar, the Greek Easter.
Somewhere along the way, old things have been replaced by pots and jugs of water – which make even louder noise! And are so much fun to watch falling and shattering. The shards of pots are a much sought-after souvenir, not only for tourists, as they are kept for good luck.
So it’s not without reason that hotels on Corfu are booked out a long time ahead of Easter every year. Especially those, who are close to Corfu Town and hotels who offer their guests the possibility to go to town by boat on Saturday morning.
The White House in Kalami has started an Easter tradition of boat trips to Corfu Town on Big Saturday. Reviving the custom of the Durrells, who loved traditional events like Easter, and would sail their family boats into the Corfu Town Old Port.
More about the Corfiot customs in the Holy Week, you find here.