Easter in Sardinia – All You Need to Know for a Perfect Trip (2024 Update)

Angela Corrias in Tharros Sardinia

Angela Corrias

Hands down, Easter in Sardinia is one of my favorite times to visit the island. The weather is perfect for sightseeing and there are so many traditions that it’s just one of the most charming moments of the year to be there.

A charming blend of folklore and religious rituals from functions to processions to reenactments of the main events from Jesus’ passion through his resurrection is what defines Easter in Sardinia. To make moments even more pleasant, tuck into the fantastic cakes and types of bread, both delicious and visually beautiful.

If you are ready to plan, here are some of my tips for an unforgettable Easter in Sardinia.

Image: Statue of dead Christ in Cagliari.

Easter in Sardinia 2024 – Dates to remember

We celebrate Easter in Italy at the end of the 40 days of Lent, right after Carnival. As you know, Carnival in Sardinia is a big deal of different celebrations depending on the town.

  • March 24th – Domenica delle Palme (Palm Sunday). This is the Sunday before Easter and in Sardinia, you will see beautifully decorated palms and olive tree branches.
  • March 28th – Giovedì Santo (Maundy Thursday or Holy Thursday). This is the last day schools are open before the Easter holidays. Among the rituals that can take place on Holy Thursday is the foot washing.
  • March 29th – Venerdì Santo (Holy Friday). This is not a bank holiday but schools are closed. In most places, they organize the Way of the Cross (Via Crucis) to recreate the passion of Christ.
  • March 31st – Pasqua (Easter Sunday). This is the main day of the short Easter holidays and it’s obviously Sunday so everything is closed. If you want to have lunch or dinner at a restaurant, I suggest you book ahead because many Italians eat out for Easter.
  • April 1st – Lunedì dell’Angelo (Easter Monday). This is picnic day in Italy and in Sardinia, too.
Image: Coccoi cun s'ou bread for Easter in Sardinia.

Best places to visit in Sardinia during Easter


Cagliari is Sardinia’s capital and largest city, so you can expect plenty of events and celebrations to take place in its many churches.

The most important events of the Holy Week in Cagliari are by all means the religious parades organized by the local historic brotherhoods that are connected to the different historic districts.

In Cagliari, the events of the Holy Week actually start even before Palm Sunday. On the Friday before Palm Sunday, in fact, the main event takes place. It is known as the Procession of the Mysteries, in Sardinian language “Is Misterius” in Sardinian, and is held on the Friday before Palm Sunday. The members of the Brotherhood of the Holy Crucifix wear a tunic and a white hat and carry seven statues into the seven churches of the historic center.

Holy Wednesday is the day of the Vesting, during which the sisters of the Holy Crucifix dress the statue of Our Lady of Sorrows in mourning. On Holy Thursday, they stage the crucifixion of Christ. These are all very scenic and solemn rituals. If you are spending Easter in Sardinia, I recommend taking part in at least one of them to get the vibe of the season and the festivities.

Do you need an itinerary to explore Sardinia at your own pace? I create tailored itineraries to help you plan your trip!

Image: Cagliari cathedral.


Tadasuni is one of those villages with nothing to see and do. You would visit Tadasuni only if you have a friend from there who invites you for lunch or at Easter.

Around Easter time, in fact, in Tadasuni you will experience ancient Sardinia, the dawn of Christianity, and a primordial sense of religious faith.

Starting from Palm Sunday, every day there is a celebration run in the oldest way and while it’s the local priest who leads them, all the townspeople do their part. I was lucky enough to attend some of their events and even though I come from a village not far from Tadasuni, it was all new to me, too, and extremely eye-opening to my own culture.

If you are planning to spend Easter in Sardinia and can make it here for at least one day, it will add great value to your whole experience.

Image: Mass of Palm Sunday in Tadasuni, Sardinia.

Santu Lussurgiu

Santu Lussurgiu is another town in Oristano province where Easter is strongly felt. Four confraternities organize the para-liturgical events of the Holy Week through Easter Sunday.

The village is small and very scenic in itself as it’s near the Montiferru mountain. Apart from the main events of the Holy Week such as the Crucifixion, the Passion, and the Way of the Cross, in Santu Lussurgiu every event is accompanied by songs and beautiful representations of the local choir.


Ghilarza is also a small town in central Sardinia and particularly spectacular here is Palm Sunday. The palms of olive branches handed out after the Mass are beautiful and those carried by the priest and the clergy are tall and very scenic.

In Ghilarza, you will also find a few bakeries where they sell fantastic Easter cakes. I suggest you try the ones at the Panificio Pische on the main road, it’s a traditional bakery that has been making traditional cakes for decades.


Blending folklore and religion, the events that take place in Iglesias for Easter are among the most fascinating in Sardinia. The Holy Week in Iglesias is a charming sequence of events recreating the core moments of Jesus’ passion, death, and resurrection.

Several processions are organized and often led by white-hooded characters reenacting medieval figures and rituals.

Image: Decorating palms in Tadasuni in Sardinia.

What to do during Easter in Sardinia

Attend religious celebrations

During the Holy Week, Sardinia is full of activities, rituals, and celebrations both religious and para-liturgical. From Palm Sunday through Easter Sunday, priests and townspeople gather and meet to commemorate the last essential moments of Christ before dying and resurrecting. So whether it’s the commemoration of his triumphal entrance in Jerusalem or the stations of his passion, the last week of Lent rounds off 40 days of mourning started on Ash Wednesday after Carnival.

Every town in Sardinia has its own Easter celebrations. Even if two villages are next to each other, it’s very much possible that their events differ.

Some of the most common events that you will find across Sardinia include making decorated palms to be blessed during the Mass of Palm Sunday, religious processions across town, commemorating the passion in the Via Crucis (Way of the Cross), and obviously, the most important, celebrating his Resurrection on Easter Sunday.

Here are some of the most popular and heartfelt events organized in Sardinia to celebrate Easter.

Domenica delle Palme (Palm Sunday)

The Sunday before Easter starts the Holy Week to commemorate the triumphal entrance of Jesus in Jerusalem. In Sardinia, this is celebrated with finely decorated palm branches and small olive branches handed out to the townspeople once they are blessed by the priest at the beginning of the mass.

Image: Decorated palms in Sardinia.

Lavanda dei piedi (Foot washing)

The rite of foot washing takes place on Maundy Thursday, which is the day that puts an end to Lent. What’s known and reproduced today as foot washing during Easter in Sardinia and also in other regions of Italy is actually a very ancient custom meant to symbolize hospitality.

As described in John’s gospel, it was the duty of the slave towards his landlord, of the wife towards her husband, and of the son towards his father. This is what Jesus does to the Apostles after the last supper and this is what the local priests and also the pope do during a religious function.

Via Crucis (Way of the Cross)

Not every town celebrates the Stations of the Cross. Where they do, it’s on Good Friday and usually takes place with the priest leading a procession of townspeople and stopping at every station.

The Crucifixion

This rite is known as “S’Incravamentu” and the priest recreates the moment when they placed Christ on the cross. It takes place after the Way of the Cross on Good Friday.

Taking Jesus off the Cross

This is called “S’Iscravamentu” and happens on the same day of “S’Incravamentu”, usually on Good Friday, and commemorates the moment they took Jesus off the cross after his death. This usually happens in the dark and is followed by a full day of mourning before Easter.

Easter Vigil

Easter Vigil is known as “Veglia Pasquale” and in most towns and villages takes place on Easter Saturday. This is a series of functions of mourning for the dead Christ.

Mary meets the resurrected Jesus

In the Sardinian language, this is known as “S’Incontru” and it means “the meeting”. In many towns, this ritual happens on Easter Sunday before the main Mass and is the moment when the grieving Mary meets the resurrected Christ.

In many churches, to mourn the death of Christ, the priest puts a veil on all the statues. This veil is taken off after the commemoration of the meeting between the Virgin Mary and her resurrected Son. This also marks the end of the mourning and the beginning of the celebrations.

Image: Veiled statues before Easter in Sardinia.

Go for a picnic on Easter Monday

In Italy, we call Easter Monday “Pasquetta” or Lunedì dell’Angelo and we usually spend it outdoors. You will see locals gathering in parks, mounts, and beaches for walks, picnics, or just spending a day out.

Easter is also around the end of winter, so it feels like welcoming the Spring, even though don’t expect the weather to be very warm.

Eat the local sweets and bread

Sardinian Easter sweets and pastries are unforgettable. They are so good that they can easily become your reason to spend Easter in Sardinia.

So the island boasts very good food and fantastic sweets all year round, but the Easter ones are by far my favorite, especially those known as “pardule” or “formaggelle” made with ricotta cheese or just simple fresh cheese. Be careful, they are addictive.

Pan’e prama bread, beautifully carved and decorated with roasted almonds. It’s savory but leaves a sort of cake-ish aftertaste. You can find it in the town of Ghilarza for Palm Sunday, even though they start making it the week before.

Another traditional bread made for Easter in Sardinia is the one known as “Coccoi cun s’ou” which translates into bread with the egg. Coccoi is the typical bread that remains harder and crunchy on the outside and softer inside.

Made with durum wheat, you will find “coccoi” bread all year round but obviously without the egg because that’s an Easter symbol and less decorated.

Image: Pan'e prama for Palm Sunday in Sardinia.

Go down Su Gorropu gorge

Spring is the perfect time to climb the spectacular canyon of Su Gorropu in the Ogliastra region, Nuoro province. Provided that it doesn’t rain, spring is the best time to visit Sardinia and head to Su Gorropu because it’s not cold anymore but the summer heat hasn’t started.

Winter is also not recommended (and I think even closed) because ice or humidity makes the slopes too slippery.

Explore an archaeological site

Wherever you are in Sardinia for Easter, this is not difficult since the whole island is clothed with archaeological sites and ancient ruins. As the weather gets better, from north to south any ancient site is a great destination.

In the south, an incredible archaeological park is Nora, not far from Cagliari. If you are in central Sardinia, on the western coast, don’t miss the scenic Tharros near Cabras, while in the north, must-visit sites are the Santu Antine nuraghe and Monte D’Accoddi pre-nuraghic ziggurat.

What to pack for Easter in Sardinia

  • Raincoat. To face the wind and unexpected rain.
  • Walking shoes. Your go-to comfortable shoes, whether it’s for walking, hiking, or trekking.
  • Comfortable trousers. They don’t need to be wool anymore, warm cotton is enough in Sardinia around Easter time.
  • Long-sleeve tops. Perfect for layering.
  • Jumpers/sweaters. You might still find cold weather especially early morning and at night.
  • Umbrella. If Easter is in March, expect rain any time because it’s a pretty unpredictable month.
  • Sunscreen. Fair skin might need sunscreen especially on the beach or in the mountains.
  • A fancier outfit. Including shoes, in case you want to attend parties or religious functions.


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