Cancun, Mexico is a great place to travel to any time of the year with gorgeous beaches, plentiful opportunities for scuba diving, and guaranteed sunshine. From September to December, the Mexican calendar is packed with festivals from El Grito (Independence Day) to the pre-Christmas celebrations of Las Posadas. These cultural celebrations are a real bonus for vacationers lucky enough to be in Cancun at that time. Best of all, hotel prices are at their lowest in the fall before rising steeply for the peak winter season. So remember, to book your hotel and car rental early, at least a few weeks in advance of your trip.
Day of Kukulcan
Those visiting the Mayan ruins at Chichen Itza around the fall equinox can join the crowds of curious onlookers, archaeologists and astronomers who gather to witness the amazing phenomena on the Day of Kukulcan. This is when the “feathered serpent” is believed to return to the earth, bringing a blessing of fertility and a good harvest. The sun projects onto the ancient pyramid creating a shadow of a 34-meter long serpent which appears to descend the steps over a 5-hour period. Visitors can witness this ancient spectacle and marvel at the mathematical precision of the ancient Mayans who created it.
Dia de Meurtos, or Day of the Dead
The next fall celebration in Cancun is the macabre-sounding Day of the Dead or Dia de Muertos, celebrated throughout Latin America in early November. This festival welcomes home the souls of the departed but far from being a mournful time, it is celebrated with colorful decorations and feasts. Many families will share a picnic at the graves of the departed. For visitors it is a great festival to join in. It begins with a Gastronomy Fest in Cancun where chefs create their finest offerings in an all-you-can-eat buffet extravaganza! (Hungry yet?) Restaurants prepare traditional dishes to commemorate the holiday and there are costume parties, dances and special events in all the clubs. There is even a competition to create the most original altar which consists of tables decorated with colored candles, orange marigolds, food offerings and skulls made of sugar. It gives a unique insight into the historic culture and beliefs of Mexicans.
December marks the beginning of the build-up to Christmas with the “Most Beautiful Marathon in the World” followed by Las Posadas festivities of our Lady of Guadalupe. It celebrates the journey of Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem and is marked with pilgrimages, parades of decorated figures and masses, particularly in churches dedicated to the Virgin Mary, Our Lady of Guadalupe.
Add a touch of Mexican culture to your next fall vacation by visiting Cancun – it is sure to be a truly unique and memorable experience!
If you’re traveling to Cancun this fall, check out our low rental car rates at Payless in Cancun, Mexico.