Diverse beliefs and notions are what make the world a beautiful place. This diversity is what makes every culture unique. One of the most exciting cultures in the world is Mexican culture. Mexico is among the world’s most beautiful countries set across the globe, blending history, religion, and philosophical ideologies. If you have ever been to Mexico, there is a great chance you have encountered its authentic ambience full of festivity and displaying glimpses of pure Mexican traditions.
As a matter of fact, people love to celebrate a lot. However, Mexicans celebrate more often than most other cultures. Their streets are always vibrating with colours, bright costumes, musical parades, and lots of dancing. Mexican people love to celebrate almost everything, including their rich history, unique heritage, religion, and even death. No matter what they do, they’re always remembering their family members who are no longer here.
Learn with us about these significant Mexican traditions that people like to celebrate every year:
1. Putting Up the Ofrendas – The Day of the Dead
The Day of the Dead is incomplete if there is no ofrenda. It is a significant part of Mexican traditions, displaying affection and longing for those who died. The ofrenda is an altar with Mexican decorations and colours, including skulls, candles, and pictures of the deceased members. They arrange the photos in descending order, where the oldest lies on the altar.
People cook different kinds of food for their loved ones and place them on the altar. According to traditional belief, if a dead person has no picture on the ofrenda, the living forgets them. And when this happens, the deceased person no longer lives in the Land of the Dead, so they face their final death and disappear forever.
2. Celebrating in the Zócalo – Mexican Independence Day
Independence Day is a celebration that takes place in a lot of countries that have faced colonisation in the past. Mexico is no exception; they have its independence day, which takes place on 16 September. Every year, people gather in the Zócalo to celebrate this extraordinary event, starting on the night of 15 September.
Zócalo is a famous square in Mexico City that people gather at every year to celebrate. It is an iconic landmark that people come from around the world to see. Moreover, it became a significant destination, where Mexican traditions take over the ambience. People gather and hold various parades on this day, celebrating their heritage and history.
3. The Pueblo Independence Day
Mexican traditions are plenty, but nothing beats the great pride they take in their independence day, celebrating their victory in many forms. The Pueblo Independence Day is different, and it takes place on 13 August. This day commemorates when the Pueblo people rebelled against Spanish rule in 1680 and witnessed victory.
This event takes place every year at Jemez Pueblo Plaza, a historic site that witnesses many Mexican traditions yearly. People gather at the plaza to dance, hold parades, share native food, and enjoy their time.
4. Home to the World’s Biggest Carnival Celebrations
Among the most popular Mexican traditions is holding carnival celebrations every year. The best part is that Mexico is home to the biggest carnival celebrations in the world, and they take place in the renowned cities of Mazatlán and Veracruz. The festivals are named after the towns known as Mazatlán Carnival and Veracruz Carnival.
Mazatlán Carnival is the third most prominent celebration in the world, with huge parades, music everywhere, and an irresistible vibrance. People celebrate all forms of art as part of their Mexican traditions. They enjoy fireworks, poetry, or literature. Veracruz Carnival is another festival related to Lent, a yearly Christian season.
5. Pascua in the Holy Week (Semana Santa)
Religion is always part of Mexican traditions. Christianity is significant to Mexico, and they take full pride in their beliefs. Among their religious celebrations is Holy Week, a vital vacation commemorating the event when the disciples abandoned Jesus.
It is known in Spanish as Semana Santa, which means the Holy Week. Catholic Christians are the ones who celebrate Holy Week. It is one of the most significant Mexican traditions, honouring the life and death of Jesus Christ and his resurrection.
6. The Mariachi Have Their Day
Mariachi is one of the key elements that shape Mexican traditions. They are traditional groups of musicians who wear Mexican costumes, including the hugely brimmed sombrero, which is a big hat. Mariachi is not the only group who wears these big hats, cowboys also do, and Mexicans call them charros.
More interestingly, the mariachi has its festive day. It takes place on 21 January. The purpose of this day is to celebrate one of the most significant Mexican traditions. This music genre is limited to Mexico and embedded in the culture, representing their folklore music and a rich part of their heritage.
7. Children Are Celebrated on Día del Niño
Día del Niño means the day of the baby in Spanish, but it is most commonly known as Children’s Day. This day is celebrated in different places worldwide, and it takes place on 20 November, International Children’s Day. However, people celebrate Children’s Day in Mexico on 30 April.
The majority of Mexicans are Christians, and they are deemed among the religious folks. Thus, they believe that children are sacred, which is why they honour them. However, it’s not a public holiday in Mexico, but children engage in different activities to draw a smile on their pretty faces. These activities include performing art forms like poetry, face painting, plays, and workshops.
8. Quinceañera Parties Are Important Too
Turning 15 in most countries around the world indicates nothing more than being a teenager on the verge of adulthood. However, when a girl turns 15 in Mexico, it’s a big deal, and that’s what a Quinceañera is about. Quinceañera is a celebration of girls entering the world of womanhood and being ready for marriage, according to Mexican traditions.
However, girls don’t get married at such a young age anymore, but they used to in the past. This celebration isn’t only part of Mexican traditions and takes place in most of Latin America and Spain. In other words, this celebration is a staple embedded in Hispanic heritage.
9. El Dia de la Virgen Guadalupe is the Mexican Version of Christmas
Dia de Guadalupe is the Day of the Virgin of Guadalupe, and it takes place on 12 December. Mexicans, on this day, give honour to Virgin Mary, who made an appearance to a young Mexican man on this same day. According to the Mexicans, that encounter also took place in Mexico City. It’s also a national holiday all over the country.
It may not be a Mexican version of Christmas precisely, but some people from other cultures may view it that way. That’s because it takes place in December, the same month as Christmas, and is associated with the mother of Jesus. On this day, people attend Masses and churches are crammed people everywhere as part of Mexican traditions.
10. The Dance of the Voladores
Dancing is a huge part of Mexican traditions. Mexicans get up and dance their worries away whenever they get the chance. They even have their unique set of dances that the world recognises, including the dance of the Voladores. This dance goes way back to ancient times when the natives of Mexico, Guatemala, and El Salvador performed that dance as a way to connect with the gods.
This dance is one where you see a set of five men hanging in the air, where people call them birdmen or flying men. One man plays the flute on top of a pole while the other four start spinning upside down with their feet secured to ropes. The Spanish conquest came along to forbid this dance for being dangerous unaware of its religious significance in Mexican traditions.
Many of the Mexican traditions we see today have survived for centuries, narrating inspiring stories and unfolding the rich history of this beautiful country. Mexico is undeniably a mesmerising place with a distinctive heritage that makes it stand out among many cultures.
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