Holy Week is a four-day nationwide religious vacation that also doubles as spring break in Mexico. I know this is supposed to be a strictly religious holiday, but in Mexico you can make it as holy or as earthly as you like.

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8 Popular Ways To Celebrate Easter In Mexico | My Heart Of Mexico

In Mexico, Holy Week is a nationwide vacation. There’s no school all week long, and most people get at least four days off from work- Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

Whatever people do with those four days off is entirely up to them. These days can be a time for solemn religious meditation, or they can be a time for a little bit of fun in the sun.

Maundy Thursday

1. Holy option- Maundy Thursday marks the Last Supper and the start of the Passion of Christ. In Mexico, there are reenactments of this, and local youth are chosen to play the parts of Jesus and the Apostles months in advance. After watching, people visit seven churches, which represent the seven stages of Christ’s Passion.

2. Earthly option- since this is the first day of vacation, most people will catch a bus or a plane, or take a road trip to the nearest beach or holiday resort. Bus stations, airports and highways are crowded, and it’s hard to get a ticket anywhere. Let the madness begin!

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Holy Friday

3. Holy option- the reenactments continue in their most important day. This is when people flock to watch a representation of Christ’s Passion. It can get pretty shocking. The young man chosen to play Jesus has to carry a very real, heavy wooden cross, and then he gets “crucified”. He gets tied up to the upright cross. Crowds of faithful often march behind him, performing various acts of penitence, such as wearing a real crown of thorns. It’s impressive to watch.

4. Earthly option- most holiday-goers have arrived at their destination by now and are enjoying a day at the beach. As you can imagine, resorts and hotels get pretty crowded. In fact, a lot of people with no reservations simple decide to camp out on the beach or sleep in their cars. Anything for a little sunny getaway.

Holy Saturday

5. Holy option- Churches are closed today. It is a day of reflection and silence. At night, however, people attend Mass. That’s when the priest will light a candle with a new holy fire. It is a service full of joy and thankfulness.

6. Earthly option- the fun in the sun continues, and even people who decided to stay home take part in it. A long time ago, people used to give up on all sorts of things during Holy Week, including bathing. But on Holy Saturday, everyone would bathe to get clean for Easter Sunday. Nowadays, nobody gives up on showers, but Holy Saturday has remained as the day when millions of Mexicans jump into the nearest pool.

8 Popular Ways To Celebrate Easter In Mexico | My Heart Of Mexico

Easter Sunday

7. Holy option- every single little church celebrates a solemn Mass to commemorate the Resurrection of Christ. Church bells ring and people get together for a big midday meal.

8. Earthly option- This is the last day of vacation, so people make the most of their day at the beach before packing things up to head back home. Again, bus stations, airports, and highways are crowded and it’s impossible to get a ticket anywhere. I’ve been stuck in an Easter Sunday traffic jam in the middle of the highway, and it was certainly not fun.

My Holy Week

My family and I don’t usually go anywhere during Holy Week because it’s crazy. Did I mention the crowds? We just stay home and fill up the little inflatable pool for the kids, kick back and relax a bit. Nothing interesting.

On Easter Sunday, we get together with my parents and have a little egg hunt for the kids. This is not a Mexican custom, but it’s something we picked up from our time in the U.S. Besides, who doesn’t like chocolate eggs?

How do you spend Holy Week and Easter Sunday? Tell me about it in the comments!

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18 thoughts on “8 Popular Ways To Celebrate Easter In Mexico

    1. That would be nice…although this is the only nationwide vacation in Mexico, and the weather is so nice this time of year, that you really can’t blame people for setting out to have a good time

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  1. Will be in mexico city with Easter, and I have a specific question: most museums are open(from thursday till sunday)? Easter, a period full of Nostalgia,searching the easter chocolate eggs. Great memories! nowadays easter means for me mainly: work(I am a baker). But this year I am gonna spend Eastertime in Mexico City.

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    1. That’s great to hear! I’m sure you’ll have a great time because Mexico City is unusually calm and empty during Easter week. However, not all museums stay open, so it’s best to check. Which ones are you planning to visit?

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      1. on my ‘must see’: soumaya museums,memory & tolerance museum,museo de la caricature, museo de arte moderno, Tamayo,Jumex etc… Maybe Anthropology too. Another wish is ‘isla de la munecas’, hope I can manage this.

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      2. I checked and apparently the Soumaya, Anthropology, the National Art Museum, Jumex, de la caricatura and Tamayo will be open, but the museum of modern art will likely be closed Thursday and Friday. Have fun! 🙂

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  2. Venezuela has similar traditions. We spend resurrection Sunday going to church and celebrating dying and rising again to save us from our sins. We celebrate that we never have to fear death because He has defeated it and we get to look forward to eternity with Him. It’s the best news we have to celebrate and I look forward every year to celebrating with my family! Thanks so much for sharing this!

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  3. This brings me back to my Catholic childhood. We used to participate in the re-enactments. Now we do the same as you, kick back and enjoy each other’s company. Felices Pascuas!

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