Fiestas are globally known as lively celebrations of all major national holidays. All over the world, there are many different types of fiestas. For example, you can have a family fiesta in your own home without the need to honour a special occasion; just because you feel like having one! Or you can keep in line with Mexican culture and keep it traditional by commemorating Mary and Joseph’s search for refuge in Bethlehem. However you choose to celebrate or if you’re just simply fascinated by the world of fiestas, take a peek at the 9 fun facts listed below for further inspiration…
Play with a Piñata
This is an extremely fun part of any fiesta! Communities will tie up a decorated papier-mâché animal to a high point (such as a tree) and people will take turns to hit it with a stick. The more you hit the figure, the higher the chance that whatever is inside of it, will come out. Usually people fill their piñatas up with chili- or fruit-flavoured candies and cute little toys. There’s no doubt that this is the children’s favourite element of the festivities and perhaps the main reason they’re excited to attend a fiesta…
Another fiesta is sometimes known as ‘The Day of the Dead’ wherein family members help to celebrate those who have passed on. As the DEN states, it’s a day to celebrate life and pay your respects to cultural traditions. It is said that the indigenous people of Mexico believe that the soul lives on forever and it acts as an eternal source of life. On the actual day, people wait for the souls of their loved ones to come back to them so that they can rightfully honour them. If you’ve ever seen the Day of the Dead in action, you’ll notice how people paint skeletons on their face. This is to resonate with the cultural beliefs of the day and to symbolise that if you’re living or dead, you will remain bound to this earth forever.
Professional wrestling in Mexico is labelled as Lucha Libre. When a special fiesta is taking place, wrestlers will gather and take part in a special match in aid of their country’s historic battle. The participants wear masks to represent their sports persona in the ring. Since 1915 this style of mask has been used and till today, they’re still being worn as a traditional symbol. They’re also used to mimic part of a storyline, sometimes this form of wrestling is seen as a performance rather than a hardcore match.
Fight for Freedom
Did you know that fiestas helped keep communities stable by promoting unity and togetherness? In today’s world, unique fiestas still take place in Palomas. They’re viewed by the locals as key historical events and celebrate the arrival of riders with folk dances and carnival games. Historically, fiestas were fights for freedom. The Angel of Independence in Mexico signifies the battle of slavery and the way they had to defend themselves against the Spaniards. If you ever want to see the angel, take a ride to downtown Mexico City and it stands there on a roundabout, overlooking its nation with pride, respect and sincerity.
The Role of Tequila
Many Mexicans love to consume this plant-based spirit during a fiesta. Believe it or not, there are quite a few health benefits of Tequila. Also, there are two types of this alcoholic beverage, there’s the Tequila Mixto and the Blue Agave. Both of these are strong and hold the power to make you get up and dance around. Which is great as live music will be playing from the Mexican Mariachi band…
Famous Fiesta Nights
If you ever visit Mexico and it’s not around the time of a national holiday, then do not fret. A lot of places will create fiesta-themed nights and they attract thousands of tourists each year. One of these popular spots is Isla Mujeres. This is a fascinating destination as it holds a lot of history. For example, there are remains left over from Mayan temples and even a sea turtle sanctuary. If you’re going to have a fiesta, you might as well do it in one of Mexico’s most cultural landscapes. Many tourists opt to stay at the serene Suites at Beloved Playa Mujeres or you can even sleep on a boat…
Invention of Popcorn
You have Mexico to thank for this sweet and savoury cinema style treat! Approximately 9000 years ago popcorn was invented here and is passed around at fiestas. Founded in New Mexico, anthropologists discovered the remains of the corn treat in a bat cave. These days it is used for dietary needs and an entertainment snack. Popcorn is actually extremely healthy and contains low-calories. Yet, even if it was an unhealthy form of food, people would still be munching it at a Mexican fiesta!
World’s Largest Burrito
Here’s another food-themed fact for you! Incredibly, in Mexico the World’s largest burrito was created. According to the Guinness World Records, it weighed around 5,800kg and was made from one flour tortilla. Burritos are another form of fiesta food and this particular one fed hundreds of people. If you’re throwing a fiesta, don’t forget to include some classic Mexican fajitas and burrito style dishes…
You’ll definitely hear these words being shouted out at any Mexican fiesta. The saying originates from Miguel Hidalgo, the leader of the Mexican War of Independence. According to sources, this isn’t exactly what he shouted, yet through the years it altered and these were the final words. In English it means ‘long lives Mexico’ and is a key part to any cultural celebration. It was once aimed at the Spanish oppressors but now it is said freely. If you want to shout these words with pride and if you’re interested in living in Mexico, you should check out how much it actually costs to settle and travel there…
Do you fancy joining in with a Mexican Fiesta?
About the authors: Two people who LOVE a Mexican fiesta are Agness and Cez from eTramping! They’re ready to for any sort of adventure that life brings them, so if you share their passion then you can check out their Twitter, Instagram and Facebook pages. For an added bonus, take a look at their Pepo page for exclusive updates and experiences.