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Top 9 Places in Mexico to Visit on the Day of the Dead

Happy Monday! With the autumn holidays creeping up on us, we'd like to share our pick of the top destinations for the Day of the Dead. Everyone will have an altar; some places might even hold contests for the biggest or most beautiful altars. Do check those out! Specially with a Pan de Muerto, maybe even accompany it with hot chocolate. Every altar is special in its own way. The air is filled with cempasúchil, marigolds. The night is illuminated with candles meant to guide the spirits home.

Wooden statue of a person from the chest up, holing its chest open, while looking down. The inside of the chest is filled with greenery.

9 Tulum

This once sleepy town turned into one of the most expensive destinations in Mexico. The state of Yucatan celebrates Hanal Pixán, which means "Food of the Souls." It's still the Day of the Dead, but they have additional Mayan traditions

October is a part of their low season, so they have better deals.

Display of large scale skeletons, sitting over arrangements made with flowers, all in front of a church in Mexico City.

8 Mexico City

Why not go to the capital of the country for a holiday UNESCO named Mexico’s intangible World Heritage Sites? Attend El Gran Desfile de Día de Muertos (The Great Day of the Dead Parade), take a trip down the canals of Xochimilco and experience the legend of La Llorona, visit the Casa Azul ofrenda for Frida Kahlo, or learn about the different altars in the country at the National Museum of Popular Cultures. It's a three-day celebration, do you think you can do it all?

Two big "catrinas" at the entrance of tunnels made with flowers leading to the altars.

7 Sayulita

This quaint little seaside town celebrates on November 1st and 2nd. They do a traditional walk from the central plaza to the cemetery. They say it's something you must experience once in your life.

Huge statue of "La Catrina" dressed in purple with orange accents, feathers in her har, standing in front of some greenery in front of a church.

6 Puerto Vallarta

It may be rainy, but the rain is a part of the true Puerto Vallarta experience. It covers the town with a magical feeling of being in a Studio Ghibli movie. This is the gay capital of Mexico, our San Francisco, if you will. The day of the Dead is a week-long celebration here. The malecón, the boardwalk, is covered with shrines; take a stroll and check them out!

Various dancers dressed as skeletons doing a folk dance on a stage.

5 Playa del Carmen

Xcaret park is a must! With underground rivers and more than 50 attractions, there is something to do everywhere you look. Really immerse yourself in the culture with folkloric ballet, pre-colonial dances, and rituals.

Crowd gathered in front of the Parroquia of San Miguel, with colorful papel picado over them.

4 San Miguel del Allende

San Miguel de Allende is known for its quaint sights, cobblestone streets, Spanish colonial architecture, and food. It has always attracted tourists from Mexico and all around the world. UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) named this city a World Heritage site in 2008, and in 2022 it won Best Small City of the World by the international magazine Condé Nast Traveler at the Readers’ Choice Awards.

Don't forget to visit the Parroquia of San Miguel, the iconic neo-Gothic church.

Crowd gathered on either side of the colorful "Tapete de Muerte" with colorful shapes and large skulls.

3 Guanajuato

To welcome the spirits, the streets are covered with Tapete de la Muerte, Rug of the Dead. On November 2nd, from 7 am, students, artists, and towns folk decorate the roads with tinted sawdust, sand, flowers, and other natural elements. It's a majestic, colorful sight!

Woman with half her face painted as a skeleton, holding a basket of flowers over her head.

2 Oaxaca for the Day of the Dead

The city, not the state, Oaxaca de Juarez. One of the most culturally rich destinations, with beaches like Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca City is the Foodie Capital of Mexico, thanks to its unique cuisine.

Scene of a cemetery seen from above, multiple families gathered by their loves ones tombs, illuminated by candles.

1 Cabo

Experience the Altares en el Mar, the Altars on the Sea, where boats are decorated and illuminated for the Day of the Dead. Then hit the marina for live music, delicious food, and a good time.

What's your favorite part of this holiday? Tell us in the comments.


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