‘Pask Lowen!’ or Happy Easter to you. This is always a special time as we see visitors emerge from their winter hibernation, visiting Cornwall in search of Spring sunshine and enjoying some special Easter traditions.
Oys Pask (Easter eggs)
You can find egg hunts all over Cornwall. National Trust sites from Lanhydrock house to the golden sands of Holywell in association with the Rainforest Alliance, rewarding the sweet toothed with responsibly sourced chocolate eggs. Other favourite North Cornwall hunts can be found at Newquay Zoo, Tintagel Castle and on the Bodmin and Wenford Steam Railway.
Paint and Roll
Why not get creative and competitive with your eggs this Easter, by painting and then racing the hardboiled variety? Simply daub them with watercolours and acrylic paints. Or soak yours in a bowl of food dye and vinegar – the brighter the better! When you’re satisfied, head to the top of Duke Street in Padstow and let go… Egg rolling is a hugely popular Easter event, with proceeds going towards the local RNLI.
Bunny vs Doggie
If you’re not satisfied waiting for the Easter bunny to deliver your eggs, why not send your dog after them? A quirky, and thoroughly Cornish, Easter chase takes place on the sands of St Agnes. Each year, the Easter Bunny competes against up to 100 dogs in a series of races across the beach. But don’t feel too sorry for our hopping friend. Organisers only select the very best people to don the bunny outfit. And claim they ‘always manage to stay one hop ahead’!
Revel Buns and Cornish Fairlings
While there is no shortage of oys pask to be enjoyed, you might be interested in trying some sweet alternative local delicacies. Fairlings are a delicious ginger biscuit which. And as the name suggests, were originally handed out at fairs as treats for children. Revel buns are packed with saffron and make a great alternative to the hot cross bun. Saffron has a strong connection to Cornwall as it first arrived on these shores in the 1400s, brought by Phoenician traders who exchanged the valuable spice for tin.
Gathering ‘Trigg Meat’ is one Easter tradition that won’t cost you a penny. It’s particularly popular on the Helford River where people gather on Good Friday to collect the delicious local cockles. If you want to join in, think sustainably: take as much as you need and don’t collect anything smaller than a 20 pence piece.
Good Friday is known as ‘Goody Friday’ in Cornwall, a holiday and feast day best enjoyed outdoors in favourite local beauty spots. Traditionally, it’s a chance for courting couples and families to stuff their picnic hampers with some of the seasonal favourites listed above.
Boat Races and Dolly Dunking
There are other fascinating historic Easter traditions to be found around Cornwall, many of them connected with water. On the West Penwith Moors for example, children gather around Fenton Bebibell. This translates as ‘the well of the little people’. After it was rediscovered in the 1980s, locals revived the tradition of dolly dunking, with children ‘baptising’ their toys in its holy water.