If you’ve ever been in Mexico during December, you are likely familiar with the tradition of Christmas posadas. Posadas are nine days of religious observance that is celebrated mainly in Latin America, Mexico, Guatemala, and Cuba which begins on December 16th and ends on December 24th. Posadas are celebrated by individuals who appreciate the culture and holiday of the Mexican and Spanish, and this celebration has been a tradition in Mexico for over 400 years. A great time for the family to come together and celebrate Christmas, posadas are a religious tradition that has staying power. Read below to learn more about posadas in Cabo San Lucas.
The Posadas last for nine days, from December 16th through the 24th, and commemorate the journey of Mary and Joseph from Nazareth to Bethlehem. Each night during the 9 days, there are candlelit processions and reenactments, which end in house parties with lots of food, drink and cheer. In addition, many Mexican holidays include dramatizations of original events. Historically, this tradition was based on plays from the Bible that were designed to teach and pass down religious doctrine to a primarily illiterate population in Europe as far back as the 10th and 11th centuries.
The most important day of the season in México is not Christmas, but Christmas Eve which is known as Nochebuena. Nochebuena is the last night of the posadas, and the birth of Christ is celebrated at midnight. Traditionally, most families attend a midnight mass at their local church, followed by dinner and presents. On the flip side, Christmas Day is more laid back with a focus on family time and of course enjoying leftovers from the Nochebuena dinner.
There is a great focus on the type of food prepared for a posada feast. In general, everyone brings a dish to contribute to the dinner. Popular meal items for a Mexican posada include tamales, mole, menudo and sweetbreads. To quench your thirst, ponche is a popular posada drink made of sugar cane, prunes, apples and the fruit of the tejocotes (a hawthorn bush) that is sure to make its appearance at all posadas. Families and friends come together to share a meal and celebrate the Christmas season while appreciating the love and community support that Mexico is well known for.
Want to attend a posada, but in the Cabo San Lucas area, but you don’t know many people in the area? Visitors will be pleased to know they can join in on the fun as local resorts and restaurants generally offer special Christmas dinners with a posada theme.