Location: Mexico (most prominently, to lesser extent in Guatemala, Bolivia, El Salvador, Peru)
Date: around 1st of November
Description: The Festival of the Dead (in general) is based on the assumption that bad things can happen if the living fail to give the dead what is their due – in the form of prayers, food, drink or entertainment. That is why altars for the ancestors are being put up in public spaces all around Mexico: in schools, offices and even in supermarkets.
But the most important altars are the ones at home, because during the Mexican Days of the Dead the ancestors are expected to come over and visit their former homes, which is the main difference from European celebrations, that are mostly based on the living visiting the dead at their current residence.
Interesting fact is, that potent urban practices of De Muertos are today in some areas surfaced by political dissent, social criticism and satirical tones, which circular in the air under carnival guise.
There are also many carneval/parade-like events connected to the Days of the Dead happening around the whole country. One of the most popular is Desfile de Día de Muertos, the Day of the Dead parade in Mexico City, which has become a major event of the Muertos festival. This parade displays some of the beautiful ancestral traditions of Day of the Dead, complete with large skeleton puppets, moving altars, alebrijes (mythical spirit creatures), marigolds, skulls, traditional dancers etc. It is actually a relatively new tradition, as it began in 2016, furthemore it is said to have been inspired by the 2015 James Bond film, Spectre. In the movie, the opening scene shows Daniel Craig as James Bond at a Day of the Dead parade in Mexico City.
Source: ROY, Christian. Traditional festivals: a multicultural encyclopedia. Santa Barbara, California: ABC-CLIO, .
12 best things to do on the Day of the dead in Mexico city (guide-like article)