Understanding Día de Muertos

Dia de Muertos

Not to be confused with Halloween, Día de los Muertos or Día de Muertos (The Day of the Dead) is one of the most special and sacred Mexican traditions. It’s a time when people honor the dead with customs that mix ancient Aztec ritual with the Catholic faith introduced to the country by Spanish conquistadores.

Believing that the dead would want to be celebrated not mourned, Día de Muertos celebrates the lives lived by those that have passed with food, drinks, parties and colorful alters dedicated to passed loved ones. Mexican culture considers the dead almost as a part of the community, visiting both here and beyond, and to make life in the afterlife more comfortable, offerings of favorite foods or drinks, blankets, pillows or comfortable clothes, or even toys for children to play, are all brought to cemeteries or placed on altars for the dead to enjoy.

And, a very popular part of the Día de Muertos tradition are the beautiful sugar skulls and the famous Calavera Catrina, the female skeleton dressed in the upper-class outfit of a European of her time, first made famous by cartoon illustrator and lithographer José Guadalupe Posada, which has become an icon of Día de Muertos.

Find a full list of Dia de Muertos Events in Puerto Vallarta.