Day of the Dead, also called Dia de los Muertos, is something Café Pacifico London loves to celebrate. And no, Day of the Dead is not just a Mexican Halloween. Dia de los Muertos is a multi-day holiday celebrated by families and friends throughout Mexico and has seen a surge of international interest as the popularity of tequila and mezcal has grown.
The holiday centres around remembering those who have passed and helping them in their spiritual journey. Mexican culture views death not as being something to be sad or afraid of, but more as a natural way of life. Thus, it is something to be celebrated and not feared. It’s a day where those who have passed can come back to visit the living and celebrate with loved ones. The holiday has even earned recognition by UNESCO.
Day of the Dead celebrations start on 31 October and head right through till 2 November. It dates back to pre-Columbian times nearly 2500-3000 years ago, though it was more widely found in mid to Southern Mexico. The Mexican government officially recognized it as a unifying national tradition in the 1960s, and it has grown in observance across the whole country.
What do you celebrate over Day of the Dead?
31 October is All Hallows Eve, where children make children’s alters to invite angelitos (spirits of dead children) to visit. On 1 November, All Saints Day, the adult spirits come back to visit. Day of the Dead then culminates on 2 November, known as All Souls Day. This is when families head to their local cemeteries to decorate the tombs and graves of friends and family. It’s a beautiful tradition that reflects the amazing culture of Mexico.
You will find orange Mexican marigolds that are said to attract the souls to the ofrendas. Ofrendas are the decorated alters covered with offerings to the dead inviting them to visit the living. Other offerings include drinks like tequila and mezcal, pan de muerto (a type of sweet bread), sugar skulls, and traditional foods. These are all placed on the ofrenda along with photos and other memorabilia of those loved ones who have passed.
Food is a large part of the celebration, both for the living and the dead. And that’s where Café Pacifico hopes you will join us. We will be throwing a big celebration for Day of the Dead with loads of food and drink specials courtesy of our familia at Tequila Ocho and Tequila Curado on Saturday 2 November. There will be mariachis, face painting and all kinds of fun for the whole family at Café Pacifico. And to top it off, we will be having a Dia de los Muertos procession. Check out our events page for more info on how we will be celebrating. We hope you can book and join us for Day of the Dead to remember those we love.