A HOLIDAY OF MEMORY
Mexico has always been known for its amazing culture and rich traditions
. The Day of the Dead is a big part of it. Do you know when it is celebrated? It is celebrated starting from October 31st
until November 2nd
. During this huge holiday families gather together in order to honor memory of their dead relatives. It is believed, that it is the time when their spirits come back to earth. Would you like to know some interesting things about this holiday? Here they are.
TRADITIONS and their origins
· At first, it might seem that the Day of the Dead is just some kind of a Mexican All Saints’ Eve
; however, it would not be right. Before the Spanish arrived, people celebrated it in the summer. In order for it to go with the Roman Catholic calendar its celebration was moved to the fall.
· We first heard of this holiday during the Aztec times. There was a festival to honor the goddess of the underworld
. Her name was Mictecacihuatl. She was believed to guide the spirits of dead people into another world and guard their bones. Nowadays, it is La Calavera Catrina who has taken her place. It is a skeleton usually depicted wearing a long dress and a hat. You can see her image everywhere during the Day of the Dead.
· The holiday is divided into three days
: October 31st
- when people honor children who died; November 1st
is considered to be the day when spirits of adults come back to earth; and on November 2nd
people honor their dead relatives by cleaning their graves.
· People organize little altars
full of food, drinks, candies and other delicious things at home as well as at the cemetery. Sometimes they even put pillows and comforters on the graves, so that the spirits of the dead could have some rest after their long journey back to earth.
· Although, the Day of the Dead is supposed to commemorate dead people
, it doesn’t mean there’s no fun in it. During this time, people have a great chance to bond with their families: they have picnics on the graveside or in the nearest nature park, share funny stories about those who are gone, and do other interesting things.
WHERE TO GO?
If you still think that this holiday is sad and spooky, you can spend it in a nature park anywhere in Mexico. There is an amazing nature park, driving range of Cancun, where you can have lots of fun and forget about locals and their rituals. Aktun-Chen is an outstanding nature park of unbelievable beauty
full of exotic plants and animals. You will be truly amazed how beautiful nature can be! In our nature park you can take a cave tour or snorkel in one of many cenotes. Great time is guaranteed!