Mas México USA

Mixquic, mystical place with the smell of cempasuchil

If you haven’t been to this magical neighborhood in Mixquic, Tlahuac, southeast of Mexico City, this is a great opportunity to do so!

Mixquic is a chinampera zone since ancient times. Nearby regions were supplied with beans, corn and vegetables that were produced here. Its name comes from the nahuatl ‘Mixquitl’ which means place of mosques, a kind of trees.

mixquic

This neighborhood is very appealing because it doesn’t seem to belong to the city. It’s atmosphere is very village like, with many green areas and ancient structures. In addition, it has an invaluable cultural value.

If you visit this town, you must go to the Temple and ex-convent of apostle San Andres, built around 1537 by Augustinian friars above pre-hispanic sites.

On this archaeological area there’s a sculpture of Mixquixtli the death goddess, a Chac Moo, two hoops of the famous ball game and many skulls carved in stone. Also, if you visit the museum, you will see a big collection of pre-hispanic figures that were found on site and some other interesting books.

You missed out? “Mictlan: Souls’ journey through the underworld”

Mixquic, the smell of cempasuchil

Day of the Dead is classified as Intangible Cultural Heritage. On this day our passed loved ones are remembered with affection, but nobody celebrates this day like Mixquic. During this time of year, this neighborhood is visited by thousands of domestic and foreign tourists, only because of their peculiar, majestic and unique way of celebrating.

Mixquic is considered as a magical neighborhood of Mexico City since 2011.

Among pre-hispanic and religious elements every October 31, and November 1st and 2, Mixquic’s citizens place huge altars in the main square and in some houses to commemorate the Day of the Dead. Sometimes they may even welcome some of the visitors to have a meal.

On these days, people gather early on the graveyards to decorate and put up flowers, candy skulls, chocolate, amaranth, toys. Or the deceased’s favorite meal on the grave. Also, they turn on some music, dance around, share food and joke, sing, pray or even make contests and parades to celebrate.

It’s on November 2 when la alumbrada takes place. This means, they light up everything with candles to honor the dead and graveyards are filled with an orange color and beautiful smell from cempasúchil, incense and food.

So now you know, on the Day of the Dead, go visit Mixquic to experience this big celebration and live it up, even if it sounds paradoxical.

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Paola Uviarco

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