Oaxaca Day of the Dead
Oaxaca Day of the Dead Travel Journal 2012-2013
I’ve been fortunate to have experienced Oaxaca during the high season of Día de los Muertos. Throughout the year, Oaxaca radiates extraordinary vibes of discovery for visitors. There are lots of cultural and Muertos related activities—weeks prior, leading up to the eve of observance. This Day of the Dead photo journal is edited down—focused on celebrations within Oaxaca City and adjacent communities during Day of the Dead of 2012 & 2013. It was hard not to include photos from the weeks before and after Muertos events.
Ciudad de Oaxaca and nearby communities observe Day of the Dead beginning October 31 – November 2: The monumental celebration for the community of Santa Cruz Xoxocotlán is evident on October 31. Revolving tour buses filled with curious tourists flood this small community on the evening of the 31st. Some of the most stunning, authentic and adoring public alters are produced inside antique cemeteries within Oaxaca. November 1st is the popular, grand fiesta in Oaxaca City. Its Panteón General is crammed with residents and onlookers—gawking at the dazzling candlelit niches, altars and adorned graves. The cemetery’s perimeter is transformed into a festival—decked with food, flower and memorabilia vendors surrounded by galleries of games and carnival rides. The final community cemetery observance is always poignant inside of the cemetery at San Felipe del Agua. On the evening of November 2, the celebrations are winding down and this final cemetery visit is a sincere, dimming tribute to this astounding anniversary for the dead.
The sites included are: Santo Domingo Church, Plaza de la Danza at Soledad Church, Calle Alcalá and Panteón General in Oaxaca City, San Felipe del Agua cemetery, Santa Cruz Xoxocotlán and the Panteón Antigua Xoxocotlán. Amazing artistas callejeros (street performers), tapetes, and altars—including families making their preparations, both solemn and celebratory.
I’ve also included a short film we made during our 2012 visit.