Trail Ride of the Living Dead, Mexico
9 Days / 8 Nights / 5 Days on horseback
Celebrating Life on Day of the Dead in Mexico – Dia de Los Muertos from the Saddle
One of Mexico’s most important religious holidays is celebrated on All Saint’s Day (November 1) and All Soul’s Day (November 2): Dia de los Muertos – Day of the Dead. Traditionally, November 1st honors deceased children and November 2nd honors deceased adults. Day of the Dead is celebrated passionately throughout Mexico, and especially so in smaller provincial towns and cities.
Far from being a morbid event, Day of Dead emphasizes remembrance of past lives and expresses celebration of the continuity of life. This acknowledgement of life’s continuity has roots which go back to some of Mexico’s oldest civilizations including the Olmec, Zapotec, Maya, and Purépecha. The Aztecs also celebrated Day of the Dead, although earlier —August— on the current calendar.
Local families will plan for Day of the Dead celebrations days, weeks, or perhaps even a whole year in advance. A focal point of the remembrance ritual is families creating ofrendas —altars with offerings to the deceased— which are set-up in homes or public spaces like parks or plazas, and also at local cemeteries where family members are buried.
These colorful altars, which are also an art form and personal expression of love towards one’s family members now passed, are not for worshiping but instead for the purpose of remembrance and celebration of a life lived.
The Catrinas are the artistic symbol of Day of the Dead celebrations. This character on which La Calavera Catrina —“The elegant skull”— is based was conceived by Mexican engraver José Guadalupe Posada. The original Catrina was titled La Calavera Garbancera: in the form of an artistic etching in zinc, composed for use as political satire around 1910, intended to poke fun at a certain social class of Mexicans who the artist portrayed as having European-aristocratic aspirations; thus the Catrina’s archetypal grandiose plumed hat of a style which passed through a period of high fashion in Europe during that age.
During our equestrian program “Trail Ride of the Living Dead" you will be immersed in one of the most representative Mexican traditions of all time! You will be able to discover this treasure of syncretism in a unique way, riding on horseback and participating actively the celebrations, in a way that will allow you to discover why this tradition has conquered the empathy in the world and why it has been an inspiration for fashion and various international films.
But that is only the beginning. In addition of discovering in situ the value of this ancestral tradition, you will enjoy the warmth and hospitality that distinguishes the Mexican people.
You will taste a variety of dishes of the ancestral gastronomy of Mexico, you will enjoy the best tequilas, listen to mariachi music and discover from the saddle sites of great historical value, heritage cities, magical towns and villas with great legends. Experts in the mixology of ancestral drinks will guide you during tasting. Drinks that will prepare you to accept the body painting as Catrinas. 😉
The accommodations are exceptional and adequate for the characteristics of this magnificent equestrian travel plan.
This is undoubtedly, cultural-wise, the most unique riding holiday ever!
Not for nothing UNESCO declared in 2008 the Mexican feast of the Day of the Dead, as Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.