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HANAL PIXAN: The tradition of the souls
  • 4 Day 3 Nights
  • Availability : Oct 31 - Nov 3

In the Yucatan Peninsula, the day of the Dead tradition is known as “Hanal Pixan,” which means “soul food.” This is a tradition of the Mayan people that takes place to remember their departed loved ones and honor their memory by placing altars with offerings filled with typical food such as mucbipollo and pan de muerto, as well as decorations for the day of their visit since on those days it is believed that the souls of the deceased can return to the world and enjoy the offerings. This tradition takes place from October 31st to November 2nd.

The first day, October 31st is dedicated to children and is called “u hanal palal.” The second day, November 1st, is dedicated to deceased adults. It is called “u hanal nucuch uinicoob.” The third day, November 2nd is “u hanal pixanoob,” called in some places misa pixán. A mass dedicated to the souls is held on that day, usually in the town’s cemetery.

The tradition includes several rituals. The main one consists of setting a table as an altar, lit with wax candles, under the trees in the courtyard, and near relatives’ graves, where typical food is placed.

As every year, fairs and festivals are held where cultural and artistic activities are exhibited in allusion to the Day of the Dead, expressing respect for the emblematic tradition of Hanal Pixán. You can enjoy folkloric music, photo exhibitions, theater, typical dishes, and more at these events.

What’s included

  • Round-trip Transportation from Mexico City to Merida
  • Hotel (3 nights) with Breakfast and dinner
  • Hanal Pixan Festivals Tour
  • Chichen Itza and Cenotes tour
  • Gran Museo del Mundo Maya with transportation
  • Guide
  • Taxes
  • Services not mentioned

Aditional Info

  • This celebration is unique, and once a year, we recommend you book as soon as possible since we are out of spots quite fast. We can not guarantee the prices nor the availability.
  • Bring comfortable clothes.
  • The tour is not recommended for small children, min. group size 10 people.
What does the tour involve?

This tour consists especially in knowing the Day of the Dead in the Mayans way (Hanal Pixán). A tradition that has been carried out throughout the Yucatán Península for years.

You can learn in detail about Hanal Pixán. A tradition of the Mayan people that is carried out to remember in a special way the friends and relatives who have gone before them on their eternal journey. 

You will visit the Hoctun cemetery. You will see colorful tombs, beautiful mausoleums, and even replicas of famous structures in the country, such as the Latin American Tower in Mexico City. 

You will learn about the Hanal Pixán festivals, where artistic presentations will take place, revealing the power of this magnificent tradition. As you pass through the festivals, you will find colorful offerings with flowers, food, candles, and decorations honoring those who have passed away.

Of course, you will visit a local community where you will learn to cook typical dishes that are placed in the Hanal Pixán offerings and the archeological site of Mayapán, where you will find a replica of the famous pyramid of Kukulcán in Chichen Itzá.

To complete the adventure, you will visit one of the seven wonders of the world, “Chichen Itza,” as well as live a unique experience swimming in cenotes. These places were sacred for the Mayas since they performed sacrifices and rituals that were part of their cosmology. All of this will be explained to you in detail by a guide so that you can learn about the Mayan way of seeing death. 

Finishing this extraordinary journey through the Mayas and their traditional “Hanal Pixan,” we will take you to the Great Museum of the Mayan World. Here you will get to know this great culture. 

Itinerary

Day 131 October - Arrive to Merida and City Tour

This day begins your adventure in Mérida for the Hanal Pixán tradition. When you arrive at the airport in Mérida, our team will be waiting for you to take you to the hotel where you will stay. After that, the team will take you to witness the Feria de las Ánimas. You will enjoy the display of offerings, the best Yucatecan handicrafts, delicious Mexican snacks, as well as various artistic presentations related to Hanal Pixán. Also, we will take you to the San Sebastian neighborhood, located 5 minutes from downtown Merida. You will find the Pib Festival and meet samples of the main dish of the tradition, “el Pib .”You will be able to taste the different recipes and see how to prepare this delicious dish. In addition, there will be different presentations and exhibitions related to the Hanal Pixán tradition that you cannot miss.

At the end of this day of festivals in the city to learn about the tradition, we will take you back to the hotel for dinner and rest.

– Dinner at the hotel

Day 21 November

This day you will have breakfast at the hotel to venture first to the archeological site of Mayapán, also known as “The Little Chichen Itzá” and considered the last Mayan capital. Here, you will find shrines and altars in small dimensions, as well as a replica of the pyramid of Kukulcan of Chichen Itza, but in smaller size. If you have any questions, the guide will be available and attentive to answer them.

At the end of the archeological site tour, we will take you to Mayapán. A Mayan community in Yucatán where local people will teach you how to prepare typical traditional dishes in the Hanal Pixán offerings. In addition, you will learn interesting facts about local Mayan life and traditions, especially the Hanal Pixán that takes place on these dates. 

Afterward, we will take you to visit the Hoctun cemetery. A place full of unique mausoleums. Besides the inscriptions, flowers, and cherubs painted on each tombstone, there are small constructions on top of them, from pyramids to huts and a replica of the Torre Latinoamericana in Mexico City. 

During the tour through the cemetery, you will see how the Hanal Pixán tradition takes shape. It is a magical experience. You will see the cemetery’s tombs clean and with colorful decorations, some with altars and offerings. 

On your return to Mérida, you will be dropped off at your hotel and have the rest of the day to explore the city. 

 

– Breakfast at the hotel

– Mayapán archeological zone

Day 32 November

This day will begin with a delicious breakfast at the hotel. Then we will take you on an unparalleled experience. We will take you to visit one of the seven wonders of the world, “Chichen Itza ” where you can explore the great Mayan culture. Here, one of our specialized guides will give you a tour to learn about the place and its fascinating history. In addition, you will know how the Mayans viewed the concept of death and sacrifices in ancient times. 

After visiting Chichen Itza, you will be guided to visit two Mayan cenotes. Cenotes are magical places that nature offers us. They are deep subway bodies of crystalline water. For the Mayas, cenotes were considered portals or windows to the world of the dead. They believed that when people died, they traveled a long way to the world of the dead, for them called Xibalba.

You will visit the Mayan cenote Ik-Kil, located 10 minutes from the archeological site of Chichen Itza, where you can swim in its magnificent crystalline waters. At the same time, you learn a little about the history of this sacred place. Then you will be taken to the Xkeken cenote in Valladolid. This is inside a subway cavern where you can swim and admire the rock formations. The sun shines through a small natural entrance at the top of the vault, illuminating the interior and creating an amazing image with the reflection of the water.

To end this day of adventure and Mayan culture, you will be taken to the hotel for dinner and rest to await the last day of the tour.

– Breakfast at the hotel

Day 43 November

On the last day of the tour, you will have breakfast at the hotel and learn more about the Mayan culture. You will visit the Gran Museo del Mundo Maya, a modern cultural space considered one of the most important in Latin America. This museum has four permanent halls that exhibit more than 1,000 important archeological pieces of the culture. These pieces have content about the archeology, anthropology, ethnology, history, and customs of the Mayan world in the region.

After the visit to the museum, you will be taken to the hotel for check out. The service from us will be finished by transferring you to the airport to return to your origin, or you can continue your tour to another Mexican destination.

– Breakfast at the hotel

Photos