Halloween to the Mexican-Style, day of the dead



Day of the Dead Celebration, The Real Walking Dead
In Mexico, the ever-evolving concept of death

In Mexico, the ever-evolving concept of death dates back to the time before the first Spanish explorers even set foot on Cozumel. The transition from human sacrifices to setting up celebratory feasts for the departed has even incorporated elements of Halloween to its lore, in order to become the Día de Muertos that we enjoy nowadays.

All Saint’s Day, All Saint’s Day celebration

Halloween to the Mexican-Style, Day of the Dead


A quick reminder: The Days of the Dead are actually three in Mexico. First is All Hallow’s Eve (Oct. 31), which will be familiar to Americans everywhere since Mexico has embraced their tradition of setting up Halloween costume parties and scary attractions to bring out the mirth among los muertos.


While you won’t find many kids trick-or-treating on the date, you’ll notice children asking for their calaverita or candy and spare change (the latter is preferred).Even if trick-or-treating isn’t big in Mexico, kids staying at The Grand at Moon Palace Cancun can indulge their sweet tooth with Halloween-themed treats in The Playroom, which will also be visited by a variety of Halloween characters leading up to Oct. 31. On the night itself, there will be a big Halloween horror show at the resort’s expansive theater. 


Children and adults should feel free to dress up at Moon Palace Cancun when they hit the Casa del Terror at the Galactic Ballroom for some Halloween fun tinged with a bit of Mexican-Caribbean flavor, from Oct. 26-31.  


At Sun Palace, there will be a traditional Halloween Party on Oct. 31 in the lobby bar at 9 p.m., followed by a more adult-centric DJ Horror Party from 10 p.m. to 12:30 a.m.

All Saint’s Day, The Dead Get Their Due


The next holiday is Día de los Inocentes, not to be confused with December’s Día de los Santos Inocentes, which serves as Mexico’s answer to “April Fools Day.” Instead, Nov. 1 is All Saint’s Day, and it’s when Mexican families finish setting up their altares de muertos (altars to the dead). A typical altar consists of a table decorated with the departed’s picture on the mantle, surrounded by his or her favorite food and drink.


Many places hold contests that reward the most original altares, which only reinforces the festive air around this folkloric holiday. Cozumel Palace will hold one of these contests, so make sure to drop by and sample some of the unique seasonal tastes, with Pan de Muerto as the most familiar offering: It’s similar to a sweet roll covered in granulated sugar, and decorated with bread “bones” that is often paired with traditional hot chocolate.


The night’s celebrations move from homes and restaurants to a fitting place: the local cemetery. Yup, Mexico truly moves the party to the place where their muertitos (the endearing term given to the departed) lie, in a loving act of remembrance filled with song, drink, and the reassurance of peace in the afterlife.


Dead Men Rising


The vigil takes us into the third day of celebration, the actual Día de Muertos (Nov. 2). You may also notice costumed people making the rounds, but they mostly dress up as calaveras and catrinas, the traditional depiction of death popularized by the revered artist and engraver José Guadalupe Posada in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. While these three days are the official dates, Mexico revs up for the Days of the Dead from early October onwards, so keep an eye open for all sorts of events related to the season at all Palace Resorts. Walk among the decorated tombstones, breathe in the sweet smell of cempasúchil (Mexican marigold, the flower of the dead), and make a toast for those who have already left us. They’ll be smiling upon you, amigo.

Ranks among the best resorts in all destinations


  • Mary Y

    Alamosa, Colorado

    Sun Palace is the best!

    We had another fantastic trip to Sun Palace February 15-25. We are never disappointed staying there - staff, customer service, accommodations,and food are very good!

  • Oringman

    Burke, Virginia

    You will love this resort!

    We love this resort and come back every year. The location and quality of the resort and excellence of the staff make it difficult for us to go anywhere else. The food is excellent. We are never disappointed.

  • Barry G

    Cape Coral, Florida

    Amazing Staff at Isla Palace Resort

    Arriving by Catamaran, we were greeted with warm towels and tropical drinks. Beautiful sunrises and amazing sunsets. Delicious food and nightly entertainment.