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Hanal Pixán¿Qué es el Hanal Pixán?Paseo de las Ánimas
Paseo de las Ánimas
The Passage of the Souls

The “Paseo de las Ánimas” was started in 2008 by the Ayuntamiento de Mérida, as a way to add to the already popular traditional exhibit of altars in various parts of town, known as “Hanal Pixan”. The original tour went between the Ermita church and the Cementerio General, recreating the route that the souls must take during those days.


The procession of souls is made up of children and youth dressed in typical Yucatecan dress and made up to look like the dead. The ceremonial parade is enjoyed by families while observing the traditional altar exhibit, set up with the basic elements that the Mayan culture uses, such as colored or black candles, sweets and drinks of the region, and representative flowers and crosses of Yucatán.


Along the route there will also be characteristic prehispanic music and there will be three stages located at the Cementerio General, La Ermita de Santa Isabel plaza, and the Arco de San Juan, where the colorful will mix with tradition and respect for local customs.


Don’t miss the chance to enjoy a unique event in the world, only celebrated once a year, which, as well as showing how Mérida celebrates the dates of the dear departed, also brings together attractive artistic events for all ages.

The event:

Friday Oct. 31, starting at 6 pm, from the Cementerio General to the Arco de San Juan (Calles 66, 77 A, 64 A and 64, Centro).


Activities to enjoy:

- Solemn parade of the souls, who will also dance the Vaquería;

- Exhibit of altars with participation of citizen councils, private businesses, residents of the area, and municipal bodies;

- Three stages with musical events, artistic representations, and reading of stories and legends;

- Mayan ceremony at the Cementerio General to honor the dear departed, exhibit and enjoyment of Yucatecan gatronomy;

...and tour of the Cementerio General.

Yucatan Today

"Hanal Pixán"

With deep hispanic roots, the celebration of Hanal Pixan is a deeply rooted custom that takes place in all the towns in the state of the Yucatan, between October 31st and November 2nd.


It establishes the link between the living and the dead, to honor friends and relatives who have passed away to their eternal rest.


October 31st is dedicated to the children’s souls, November 1st. is dedicated to the adults’ souls and November 2nd. is  “Faithful Death Day” (children and adults).


The altars are previously set with the food, candies and the soul’s favorite things, placing colored candles on the children’s altar and black or white candles on the adults’.


According to the belief, there are dead people who don’t have relatives to honor them or for some reason they do not set an altar for them; these spirits are called “Lonely Soul”. These souls get sad and begin their return without having accomplished their mission. In this case, a small and simple altar is set on the corner of the house, placing different kind of offerings. Then, they are loudly called to invite them to take the essence of the food.

Altar of Hanal Pixán / Mayan Tradition
Adult Altar / Making
Black or white candle made of wax

Candle stick holder’s and incense burner made of clay.

A tablecloth embroidered with white, black or purple flowers

"Teresita", "Virginia", "X-tees" and "X-pujuk" Flowers

"Jicara" (A special bowl of water)
"Ruda" (medicinal plant "Ruta graveolens")
Corn grains
A photograph of the deceased
A Holy Cross
Ash on the floor next to the altar
Ornaments made of tree bark
Sweet bread known as “Pan de muerto”
“Atole Nuevo” (a traditional hot beverage made of typical corn)
Elote tierno y elote sancochado (Baby / young corn and boiled corn)
Pib (a special baked tamal)
Cigarrets and Liquor (if the deceased used to consume)
Children Altar / Making
Colored candles
Candlestick holder’s and incense burner made of clay
"Jicara" (A special bowl of water)
"Ruda" (medicinal plant "Ruta graveolens")
A Holy Cross
A Photograph and toys of the deceased
Pan dulce (Sweet bread)
“Atole Nuevo” (a traditional hot beverage made of typical corn)
Fruits of the season
Elote tierno y elote sancochado (Baby / young corn and boiled corn)
Pib (a special baked tamal)
Sweets of pumpkin seed
Food and Candies on the table:
Foods: Candies:
"Relleno blanco o negro" (turkey stuffed with ground meat with different spices)
Escabeche de pollo
Frijol con puerco
Cochinita pibil (pork cooked underground)
Puchero (stew)
Handmade tortillas made of corn
Xe’ek’ (mix fruit salad made of orange, tangerine and "jicama" [arrowroot])
Yuca (Yucca, cassava or tapioca root)
Coco (Coconut)
Camote (sweet potato)
Mazapán (marzipan)
Calabaza (pumpkin)
Fruits of the season