of Mexican Holidays and Celebrations
Click on linked events to
read articles about them.
International Guitar Festival
San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato
San Miguel's Guitar Festival features performances throughout the city, master classes
by internationally renowned artists, lectures, exhibitions of
instruments, as well as a food and arts festival spotlighting
traditional food and art from the region. www.smaguitarfest.org
Cabalgata Villista (Villista Cavalgade)
More than a thousand people take part in the
Cabalgata Villista, a horseback riding adventure covering 136 miles from
Chihuahua City to Hidalgo del Parral. Families are welcome to
Dating back to prehispanic times when local
indigenous people offered the festival to the gods in hopes of a
bountiful harvest, the Guelaguetza brings together groups from the
region's seven indigenous cultures to sing traditional songs and perform
traditional dances. Handicrafts typical to each region are also on
Feria Nacional de Sarape (National Sarape Fair)
Santa Ana Chiautempan, Tlaxcala
This annual month-long fair highlights Mexico’s
renowned rectangular sarape shawls, one of the country’s
traditional textile handicrafts.
Fiestas de la Vendimia (Wine Harvest Festival)
Ensenada, Baja California
A food and wine festival where fine vintages from local wineries
compliment local dishes.
Fiesta de la Marimba y las Flores (Marimba and Flower Festival)
Comitan and Palenque, Chiapas
Ten days of marimba and flowers at one of the most important
archaeological sites in the world.
Feria de Huamantla (Huamantla Fair)
At this event, dedicated to the Virgin Mary, churches and miles of city
streets are draped in a beautiful tapestry of colorful flower petals and
decorative sawdust. A running of the bulls follows the solemn event.
Feria del Hongo (Mushroom Fair of San Juanito)
San Juanito, Chihuahua
A mushroom is a mushroom is a mushroom. Learn
more about the various types of mushrooms and their diverse
contributions to the culinary world through workshops, demonstrations
and taste-testing. Cooking contests and cultural events help to round
out this event.
Mani Festival (Fiesta de Mani)
Mani is known in Mexico as the site of the
infamous "Auto de Fe," where bishop Fray Diego de Landa burned
valuable Mayan codices and manuscripts in 1562. Mani is one of the most
representative Mayan towns alive. This festival features local dancers,
bands, traditional cuisine, live concerts, mechanical attractions, art
exhibitions and more. The festival takes place at the center plaza and
offers visitors from all over the world a unique cultural
Las Morismas de Bracho (Morismas of Bracho)
A reenactment of the battles between Moors and
Christians, held annually for more than 300 years, this event involves
thousands of re-enactors.
Festival del Chile en Nogada (Chile in Walnut Sauce Festival)
The city of Puebla annually commemorates Mexico’s
national dish with culinary conferences and samplings, as well as a
competition for the largest chile, judged by the Guiness Book of World
Records. Inspired by the Mexican flag, the dish contains a poblano chile
(green), walnut sauce (white), with pomegranate seeds (red) sprinkled
over. A must for lovers of Mexican cuisine!
Internacional del Mariachi y la Charreria (International Mariachi and
Festival is an annual celebration of mariachi music in the
mariachi capital of the world, gathering musicians from Mexico and
around the world.
Reto al Tepozteco (Tepozteco Challenge)
Performance depicting King Tepoztecatl’s
conversion to the Catholic religion. The festival features a procession
leading to the Tepozteco Pyramid where participants make offerings, plus
a food festival, fireworks and chinelo dances dating back to prehispanic
Fiestas Patrias (Mexican Independence Day)
Mexico celebrates its declaration of
independence from Spain in 1810. The night of September 15, marks
"El Grito," a dramatic reenactment of revolutionary Father
Hidalgo's call for his fellow Mexicans to join the uprising, which takes
place at city halls across the country. On September 16, military
parades liven up almost every Mexican city. The celebration is
particularly moving in Mexico City and Dolores Hidalgo, where Father
Hidalgo first announced the Grito de Dolores.
Equinoccio de Kulkulcan (Fall Equinox of Kulkulcan)
Chichen Itza, Yucatan
Thousands of people from around the world
gather at this Mayan ruin on the Yucatan Peninsula to witness the
afternoon shadow of the snake-god Kukulcan slowly "crawl down"
the country's largest Mayan pyramid, El Castillo.
Muestra Nacional de Antigüedades (National Antiques Festival)
Antiques Festival gathers together top antique
dealers from all over Mexico and features exhibitions of international
treasures, accompanied by a musical and educational program.
Feria del Café (Coffee Fair)
Home to some of the best coffee beans in
Mexico, Cuetzalan welcomes coffee aficionados from around the world to
taste the local coffee, fruit liqueurs and traditional appetizers. This
fair also highlights local handicrafts, especially the area’s prized huipiles
or embroidered blouses.
Feria Nacional del Mole (National Mole Fair)
San Pedro Actopan, State of Mexico
Just south of Mexico City, thousands of
varieties of mole are prepared for sampling and competition. This spicy
sauce, often served with meat or poultry, is a Mexican staple and made
of unsweetened chocolate, chiles and 61 herbs and spices. Eat your fill
and take some home. Mole paste stays fresh for several months in the
Fiesta de la Comida de los Dioses (Food of the Gods Festival)
of the Gods Festival is a culinary exploration of the fabulous
indigenous cultures of Oaxaca. Known globally for its culinary
creativity, Oaxaca is the birthplace of chocolate!
Fiesta Cervantino Internacional (International Cervantes Festival)
One of the most important cultural events in
Mexico, the annual Cervantino
Festival fills the streets of this colonial town
with performers and visitors from all over the world.
Fiesta Internacional del Nacho (International Nacho Festival)
Piedras Negras, Coahuila
Every year the Nacho
the notorious nacho, one of the region’s culinary contributions to
Feria del Pan (Bread Fair)
Cholula, home of the Pyramid of Quetzalcóatl,
hosts this annual bread fair in October. Workman construct a gigantic
brick oven in the main plaza and bakers from Cholula and neighboring
towns give demonstrations of traditional Mexican bread-making. More than
150 different kinds of bread are for sale.
Feria de Tlaxcala (Tlaxcala Fair)
Held in honor of all Saints and the dead, the
annual Tlaxcala Fair offers all sorts of cultural, sporting and culinary
events, including bullfighting, rodeos, cockfighting and escaramuzas, a
women's choreographed horse-riding show. In addition, Ms. Feria de
Tlaxcala is crowned every year, highlighting the beautiful people from
Congreso sobre Patrimonio Gastronomico y Turismo Cultural (Annual
Culinary Heritage and Cultural Tourism Festival)
Puebla, Puebla State
The colonial city of Puebla, a UNESCO World
Heritage Site, celebrates Mexico’s rich culinary heritage as well as
promotes competition among regional cuisines and the nation’s top
chefs, making it a favorite among Mexican and international food experts
alike—as well as people just looking for good food and a good time.
The festival features food workshops, delectable samplings, cultural
events and an academic program.
Noche de las Campanas (Night of the Bells)
More than 100 bells from the different churches
in Cholula participate in this annual celestial concert of bells.
Townspeople sit atop roofs with lit candles to enjoy the harmonious
spectacle. The town of Cholula boasts the greatest quantity of churches
and alters in Mexico with a total of 365 in the district, one for each
day of the year.
22 Oct. - 2 Nov.
Festival de las Calaveras (Festival of the Skulls)
The macabre Festival
of the Skulls features a variety of
morbid art exhibits, performing arts and a parade of skeletons, with
contests for the most creative costumes and artwork. Skulls of different
sizes and materials are on display as well as games and stands with
traditional food and seasonal fruits.
Throughout the month of October
Fiestas de Octubre (October Festivals)
Guadalajara sparkles with this month-long event
involving concerts, dances, cultural exhibits and food and attracting
visitors and performers from all over the world.
Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead)
The most colorful annual festival on the
Mexican calendar, commemorating departed loved ones. During this
festival, the dead have divine permission to visit friends and relatives
on earth. The living welcome the souls of the departed with offerings
incorporating their favorite foods and beverages, as well as marigolds
and candles. The Day of the Dead celebration is particularly memorable
in the states of Oaxaca, Michoacan, and the State of Mexico, as well as
in Mexico City.
Feria del Pan de la Navidad (Christmas Bread Fair)
A scenic three-hour drive from Mexico City,
Chignahuapan offers all types of specialized Christmas breads, including
the famous pan de hilo used to decorate the statues of the Virgin on
Feria Nacional del Tequila (National Tequila Fair)
Held annually in celebration of Mexico's
beloved spirit, the tequila fair features an exposition of the primary
tequila makers throughout the country, with demonstrations on how this
famous spirit is made. The fair also features charreadas or Mexican
rodeos, cockfights, mariachi serenades, and fireworks.
Dia de la Revolucion Mexicana (Mexican Revolution Day)
This day marks the anniversary of the Mexican
Revolution of 1910, with parades and celebrations occurring throughout
Feria Nacional de Plata (National Silver Fair)
Taxco is the region of the country known as
Mexico’s "silver heartland," as it is the source of much of
the lucrative silver mining and export business. Every year Mexico’s
best silversmiths compete against artists from around the world in this
lavish festival including concerts, dances, fireworks and a seemingly
endless supply of unique items for sale.
Dia de la Virgin de Guadalupe (Day of the Virgin of Guadalupe)
The most important holiday in Mexico in which
millions of pilgrims converge on the Mexico City Basilica of the country’s
patron saint to pay tribute. The square in front of the Basilica is a
stage for singing, dancing and celebration.
Fiesta de San Cristobal de las Casas (Festival of San Cristobal de las
San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas
This two-week festival in Chiapas includes a
procession by the Tzotzil and Tzetzal Indians, marimba music and a
parade of horses.
Posadas (Yuletide Processions)
Processions recreating Joseph and Mary's
journey to Bethlehem, in which people holding candles go door to door to
seek shelter. Festivities include piZatas,
Christmas caroling and special foods and sweets.
Fiesta de los Rabanos (Festival of the Radishes)
Local artisans and sculptors set up stalls
around the main square to display their elaborate pieces of art made
entirely from radishes. Local farmers use their radishes to create
nativity scenes and famous Mexican figures. Balloons and birds crafted
from local flowers add even more color.
The districts of Oaxaca City prepare floats and
costumes for processions held throughout the city. The parades feature marmotas,
translucent paper spheres lit from within and carried aloft on poles,
and giant paper mache people whose arms flop around as the person hidden
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