Día de Muertos

The Day of the Dead is a Mexican tradition based on the belief that people who passed away visit the homes of their loved ones for one day every year. It is celebrated on November 1st for deceased children and on November 2nd for adults. More than a mournful occasion, it has a festive tone as it is a ritual that celebrates the lives of the deceased by remembering them through their favourite food, drinks, music and objects.

The origin of this tradition is pre-Hispanic, but it has also incorporated elements of Christianity -although it is not necessarily a religious festival. The Day of the Dead is experienced differently throughout Mexico. Visit the map for some examples.

The "Altar of the Dead" is the main element of this festivity and has a double social dimension. The collective character of the Day of the Dead is represented by public altars (set up by institutions or groups in public spaces and dedicated to significant personalities of the life and culture of Mexico). At the same time, it is common for people to place altars for their departed loved ones in their private homes. Sometimes, families even put an altar somewhere in the house from which people can appreciate it from outside. Visit our virtual altar to learn about its traditional elements and sign up for the Altars Competition to participate individually or collectively in our celebration.

The Day of the Dead is a tradition rooted in Mexican culture that has permeated various artistic expressions and manifestations. Every year, the Embassy of Mexico in the United Kingdom organises a Day of the Dead Festival in a London venue that incorporates both traditional elements and contemporary interpretations. On this occasion, due to the current health situation, our festival will be digital. Visit our programme of events that includes talks with experts, cinema, performing arts, music, traditional recipes such as bread of the dead, workshops, a children's section and much more.