13 Bountiful Beltane Rituals to Celebrate May Day 2024

Women celebrating beltane with a flower crown

Fire, fertility, dancing and music… what’s NOT to love about Beltane!?

Beltane is one of the four cross-quarter days that sit between the solstices and equinoxes on the Celtic wheel of the year. Also known as May Day, Beltane celebrates the height of spring and the peak of fertile energy rippling through the earth.

This ancient fire festival has always been an incredibly joyful time, and it has all the ingredients of a modern celebration to encourage growth and abundance! So we’ve compiled a list of simple rituals you can do to harness all the pleasures of this beautiful time of year.

Women celebrating beltane with a fire

When is Beltane 2024?

Beltane 2024 is on Wednesday 1st May. Beltane is traditionally celebrated on May 1st, but the astrological point of Beltane may occur several days after that date.

What is Beltane?

Beltane is a cross-quarter day, which means it falls halfway between the spring equinox and the summer solstice.

Originally one of the Gaelic festivals, the name Beltane is believed to have originated from the Old Irish “Beltaine” which is derived from the Old Celtic “Belotenia”, meaning “bright fire”. “Bel” is also the name of a God in Celtic mythology, and it’s thought that Beltane may mean the ‘fire of Bel’.

This etymology reflects the central role of fire in Beltane celebrations. It was an important fire festival that symbolized the return of the sun and the renewal of life. The fires of Beltane were believed to have protective powers, and people would jump over them to purify themselves and bring good luck.

Today, the Beltane festival is celebrated by modern pagans and earth-based cultures around the world with fire rituals, fertility rituals and simple celebrations to honour the golden light of the season, as the land has grown considerably warmer since the spring equinox.

Celebrating Beltane is ALL about pleasure and connection. Whether you are a seasoned practitioner or new to Beltane, you’ll find something here to bring beauty and meaning to this powerful cross-quarter day.

Spiritual rituals using an altar with rose and rose quartz

13 Beltane Rituals

As a time of fertility, passion and abundance, the purpose of any Beltane ritual is to celebrate life. Here are 13 suggestions to ensure that whatever you do, you’re celebrating Beltane in style!

1. Create a Beltane altar

To create a Beltane altar, choose a surface and cover it with a colourful cloth. Add fresh flowers, plants, and symbols of fertility. Include candles or a small sacred fire symbol to represent warmth and light.

Decorate your Beltane altar with ribbons, maypole items, and seasonal fruits and vegetables. You can also include representations of the May Queen and other nature deities, and natural objects like crystals or stones to connect with the earth’s energy.

2. Light a Beltane fire

Lighting a fire is an essential part of any Beltane celebrations! Whether you light one outside in a fire pit, tend to your household fires indoors, or find a community bonfire to attend, this ritual act sets Beltane apart from most other pagan and Wiccan rituals.

As the beginning of summer, Beltane fires symbolise the heat and light of the Sun, and all of the fertile energy it bestows upon earth as it gains in strength.

Also read: How to Make Sun Water

3. Leap the fire

Leaping over the Beltane fire is a traditional way to bring good luck and fertility into your life. As you leap, visualize what you want to manifest in your life.

Alternatively, light two fires and walk between them for protection. Ancient medieval texts record druids driving their cattle between two bonfires into summer pastures, ensuring they stayed healthy and strong.

4. Hold a fertility ritual

Since ancient times, Beltane has been a time to celebrate the fertility inherent in nature.

But modern fertility rituals needn’t involve sacrificing animals or promiscuous behaviour! From calling in the Green Man, wearing bright colours, and decorating hawthorn trees with ribbons, there are many Beltane rituals to call in the energy of creativity on this sacred day.

5. Make a flower crown

Make your own crown of flowers by gathering fresh flowers and greenery, representing nature’s amazing ability to thrive. As you weave your Beltane crown, ponder the female energies of fertility, beauty and new life. Setting the intention to harness these in your crown will elevate this simple Beltane ritual into so much more!

In some traditions, the flower crown symbolizes the union of the May Queen and the Green Man, representing the cyclical relationship between nature’s vitality and the changing seasons.

6. Feast with community

Hold a community Beltane celebration with your favourite people! Gather friends and loved ones for a feast, including dishes that use seasonal ingredients to honour the earth’s fertility and abundance.

You could incorporate traditional recipes using fresh herbs and vegetables. Or cook on the hearth fires (AKA barbeque) to bring the sacred element into your food.

Set a table with colourful decorations and flowers, wear your flower crowns and celebrate this festive time in style. (Why not pair your feast with a Beltane bonfire for double impact?)

7. Perform an abundance spell

Like fertility rituals, abundance spells help harness the natural creative energy that nature holds, so it flows freely through your life, magnetizing MORE of what you want.

There are SO many abundance spells you could incorporate into your Beltane ritual. I love this one from the Local Mystic.

8. Make a protection charm

Harness the protective powers of Beltane by crafting a charm to carry with you, to keep you safe from harmful influences as the year rolls on.

In a small glass jar or vial, add any combination of the following ingredients, before sealing the lid with wax:

  • Salt or black salt
  • Rosemary
  • Basil
  • Lavender
  • Tigers eye
  • Onyx
  • Garnet
  • Clear Quartz
  • Coffee

Use your intuition as you add each element, sourcing local, sustainably grown plants.

Also read: 3 Full Moon Spells for Love, Money and Protection

9. Do a purification rite

Purification is an important part of Beltane. Perform a purification rite to cleanse your body, mind, and spirit using herbs, crystals, and other symbols of purification to create a sacred space before symbolically and intentionally purifying yourself.

10. Make music

Music is one of the most powerful elements of any May Day celebrations! You can sing, play an instrument, or listen to music that celebrates the changing seasons and the energy of bright new beginnings.

11. Make an offering

Beltane sits opposite Samhain on the wheel of the year, making it a day when the veils between the worlds are at their thinnest.

This means it’s an ideal time to leave offerings for the Spring Goddesses and Gods, the nature spirits, the May Queen, and your own Spirit guides and allies.

You can offer flowers, herbs, or other gifts, placing them on the Earth or  your altar to show your gratitude for the abundance of this sacred festival.

12. Dance around a maypole

The Maypole dance is a traditional way to celebrate Beltane and one of the most universally recognizable symbols of May Day.

You can create your own maypole, but it’s likely easier to find a Beltane festival celebration happening somewhere in your local area and join in with that.

This powerful Beltane ritual unites the feminine energies of the Goddess, with the masculine energies of the Green Man, literally weaveing them together using brightly-coloured ribbons that are interlaced as men and women dance around the pole.

It’s an awe inspiring and hugely fun way to celebrate Beltane!

13. Decorate your home

For the solo practitioner, decorating your home is another great way to celebrate Beltane.

Bring a branch decorated flowers and ribbons into your home and create a centerpice for your table, or hand it from the ceiling. This ritual act of bringing the the natural world inside, can help to integrate the wheel of the year into daily life, infusing even the most mundane activities with the energy of this sacred celebration.


How will you celebrate Beltane this year? As the sun rises on this sacred day, what Beltane ritual calls to you? Drop a message in the comments below…

Beltane blessings to you!

List of 13 Rituals to Celebrate Beltane

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