Day of the Dead
Día de los Muertos is a longstanding Mexican tradition that is becoming increasingly well-known throughout the world. There are aspects of similarity to its counterparts of Halloween, All Saints Day, or Samhain, but this celebration is different. Spanish Catholicism brought by the Conquistadores combined with ancient traditions from thousands of years to create Día de los Muertos. The “Day of the Dead” remains a unique and important tradition of México.
The holiday lasts three days, from October 31st until November 2nd. In the weeks preceding the holiday, families go to the cemetery to clean and freshen the graves of loved ones. Then they set up altars in the home to commemorate those lost. The most commonly used flower is the Marigold, as the strong scent and vibrant colour guides spirits to their graves. Other decorations as the holiday approaches are the small skeleton figurines wearing fancy clothing, known as La Catrina figures. They also use tissue paper flags known as papel picado, and elaborately decorated sugar skulls.
Families dedicate the first night to children who have passed, and the second to adults. It is a celebration of the life lived of those who are now deceased with music, dancing, decor, face-painting, the favourite foods of those passed, and even little poems that poke loving fun at family members who had passed, known as calaveritas.
Día de los Muertos Celebrations in the Riviera Maya
This celebration is mainly one for families to recognize, remember, and celebrate those who’ve past. Despite fascination with the cultural aspects, it would be rude for a tourist to visit a cemetery during this time.
However, it’s still possible for visitors to Quintana Roo can learn more about Día de los Muertos and experience celebrations! Xcaret Park holds an annual Festival de la Vida y la Muerte (Festival of Life and Death) in honor of the holiday, where they encourage visitors to enjoy music, dance, local food, and the locally made decor of Día de los Muertos. If you would like to visit this great event, contact our concierge service, which is free to all guests staying with Best Riviera Maya Rentals.