DÍA DE MUERTOS: SIX OF THE BEST
The new one
Mexico City first put on a Día de Muertos street-parade as a favour to the makers of the 2015 Bond film Spectre. It has since become an established event, with giant calavera puppets looming over thousands of costumed dancers.
The authentic one
West of the capital, Pátzcuaro hosts Mexico’s best-known traditional Day of the Dead celebrations. Watch parades and craft markets in town, or head out to lakeside villages such as Tzintzuntzan to see cemeteries alive with blossoms.
The cultural one
In Oaxaca City, vibrant festivities include sand sculptures, comparsas (satirical fancy-dress groups) and concerts in the main cemetery: the Panteón General. A beautiful night-time vigil is held nearby in Santa Cruz Xoxocotlán.
The highbrow one
Aguascalientes is home to the excellent Museo Nacional de la Muerte, dedicated to Mexico’s favourite subject – death. This highland city is a natural fit then for the 10 - day Festival de Calaveras, where skeletal imagery runs riot.
The theme-park one
Xcaret is a long-standing amusement park on the Riviera Maya, whose Mexican cultural programme includes a three-day Día de Muertos extravaganza. The mix of music, dance and theatre feels attractive rather than cheesy.
The ultra-authentic one
Pomuch is a dusty town in the state of Campeche, famous for its bakeries, and arguably the most ancient approach to the Day of the Dead: bones of ancestors are unearthed, cleaned and put on show. It’s macabre, but still festive.