All Saints Day – Guatemala

Travel to Guatemala and have a look it’s ancestral traditions.  Throughout the Catholic world, November 1st is celebrated as Día de Todos Santos (All Saints Day) or Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead). On this holy day, all saints are honored. The Day of All Souls is celebrated on November 2nd. On these days, families visit the gravesites of their deceased loved ones to honor them. Flowers and food are important for this celebration, and music is played to greet the souls of the dead.

For Catholics in Latin-America, these two days are the most important days to celebrate, after Christmas and Holy Week. The period of celebration begins a few days before November 1st, and can last up to two weeks afterwards. In Guatemala a variety of processions and dances take place.

All Saints Day / Día de Todos Santos

To get a glimpse of the culture and traditions, November 1st and 2nd is a perfect time to travel to Guatemala.   In Todos Santos Cuchumatán, in the department of Huehuetenango, the full day celebration takes place with horse races and cultural highlights. Families construct small altars in their homes and the children receive sweets like on Halloween. Traditional marimba music is played and people dance the El Toro and El Venado as part of the celebration. Traditional Mayan clothing is very common for both men and women in the village.  The festivities include dances, music, processions and food.

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