insideKENT Magazine Issue 61 - April 2017 - Page 57

But what of the Easter egg hunt ? Paganism was still very much alive in the 1700s , and this is when it appears the first Eostre egg hunts took place . The Pennsylvania Dutch were one group of people who had a particular love of the Eostre celebration , so much so that they created the Osterhase who was an egg-laying hare . Bigger and faster than its rabbit counterparts , the Osterhase would visit each springtime and leave beautifully painted eggs for the children who were encouraged to go out and build nests so that the hare had somewhere to leave its gifts . The next day , the children would be sent out to collect the eggs .

Over the years , the Osterhase ( or Oschter Haws as it is also known ) became the fluffier , prettier Easter Bunny . The nests became baskets and the eggs became chocolate , but the idea behind it all remained the same .
And if you want to go and hunt for Easter eggs this year , here are some of the best places across the UK to do it .
HEVER CASTLE // 1-17 APR
Hever Castle ’ s own special Easter egg hunt consists of a trail to follow through the beautiful castle grounds . Follow the Lindt Gold Bunny and earn a delicious chocolate reward at the end . As well as this , there are other Easter activities to enjoy at Hever including daily Easter bonnet making workshops . www . hevercastle . co . uk
FISHERS ADVENTURE FARM PARK // 14-17 APR
www . fishersfarmpark . co . uk
NATIONAL TRUST PROPERTIES
There are over 250 different Cadbury Easter egg hunts going on at National Trust properties all over the country , including Knole , Chartwell , Bateman ’ s and Sheffield Park and Garden . Not only will the children ( and adults ) get to search for chocolate , but there will also be face painting , dragon slaying , mystery solving and lots more at each location . www . nationaltrust . org . uk / features / join-thecadbury-egg-hunts
1066 BATTLE OF HASTINGS , ABBEY & BATTLEFIELD // 14-17 APR
At this most iconic of Sussex venues , you can join in with the Easter Adventure Quest which not only gives you a quest to carry out ( with a chocolate prize at the end ), but also gives you the chance to meet a medieval monk and other characters from the Norman era . www . english-heritage . org . uk / visit / whatson / batte-hastings-easter-adventure-quest
LEEDS CASTLE // 1-17 APR
Search out the clues and find the chocolate surprises on the Leeds Castle Easter quest . Over the Easter weekend itself , Robin Hood and Maid Marion will be making an appearance at the castle for a fun-filled walking theatre experience . It ’ s sure to be funny , silly and unforgettable for the whole family . www . leeds-castle . com
EPPING ONGAR RAILWAY // 14-17 APR
Epping Ongar Railway is believed to be the longest heritage railway in Essex , and that means its annual Easter egg hunt is the longest too ! The hunt runs the entire way from Ongar to Coopersale , which is the equivalent of 131,579 Easter eggs laid end to end … Luckily , you get to experience the hunt on board one of the heritage steam engines – and Bertie Bunn himself might even make an appearance ! www . eorailway . co . uk
MUMBLES PIER // 14 APR
For one day only you can dig for treasure at Lighthouse Bay in South Wales , just by Mumbles Pier . And when we say treasure , we do , of course , mean coloured eggs – which at Easter time is exactly the same thing ! Dig in the sand and find as many eggs as you can ; each one represents a chocolate version , which you can collect at the pier when you ’ re finished . www . mumbles-pier . co . uk
THE EDEN PROJECT // 25 MAR – 10 APR
Journey down to Cornwall to the fantastic Eden Project this Easter holiday and you ’ ll be able to hunt for coloured eggs throughout the site . It ’ s a race to find the most and exchange them for chocolate before the other teams manage it ! As a bonus , there is a giant inflatable assault course – perfect for a bit of exercise after all that chocolate ! www . edenproject . com
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