Mexican cultural traditions are vibrant and colorful, and getting to experience them enriches your understanding of the country and its people. What traditions does Mexico have? There’s upbeat music, ancient holidays, and festive parties. Traveling allows you to experience cultural traditions in Mexico, but in cities across North America, you’ll find different Mexican traditions and celebrations every day. When you’re a part of these celebrations and traditions, you’ll have a richly authentic Mexican experience.
When you think of what traditions does Mexico have, there are many different holidays, but the biggest celebration is Independence Day on September 16. The Mexican traditions begin at midnight on September 15 when cities reenact the traditional call for independence and chant the names of those who led the movement. During the day, the celebrations and traditions include parades, performances, and plenty of authentic dishes.
Mexican charros, or cowboys, are highly respected, and their competitions, called charrerías, are not just traditions of Mexico, but they’re the country’s national sport and a Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity according to UNESCO. There are several events that teams of charros will compete in, showcasing their horsemanship and roping skills. These Mexican cultural traditions have spread with immigration, and in the US, you’ll find charro teams who compete both there and back in Mexico.
The Papantla Flyers are also a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. In this prehispanic ceremony, five men climb to the top of a 100-foot-tall pole, and while one stays on top playing a flute and drum, the other four hang upside down and slowly spiral down around the pole, spinning to the music. Like many Mexican cultural traditions, the meaning of the ceremony is tied to the natural world. Their fall was traditionally done in the dry season, and since their falling bodies would resemble drops of rain, they hoped that it would bring fresh showers for their crops. Today, it’s one of the traditions of Mexico that’s performed for tourists, showcasing the country’s beauty.
When people ask “What traditions does Mexico have?”, the most iconic answer is the Day of the Dead. However, there are many cultural traditions in Mexico for this day that you may not know about. In fact, the holiday is technically two days: November 1-2. According to the traditions of Mexico, the first day is to remember children who have passed away, and the second is for adults. During these days, families share stories, clean up grave sites, and build memorial altars for their loved ones.
At all sorts of celebrations and traditions throughout the country, you’ll hear the strum of the guitar, the quick notes of the violin, and the melodic strains of the trumpet as mariachi bands play classic tunes. While mariachi music originated in the state of Jalisco, it’s become a large part of the Mexican experience, and families will hire bands for weddings, parties, and serenades.
Few cultural traditions in Mexico are complete without a feast of tamales, enchiladas, pozole soup, and plenty of tacos, and throughout the country, each region has its own dishes and spices that make it unique. As you stay curious about the Mexican experience, you’ll become familiar with dishes like mole, huaraches, and chiles en nogada, and you may even try making them at home in your own kitchen.
Mexican traditions are colorful, diverse, and delicious, and there’s no better way to experience it all than by traveling across this beautiful country.