Saturday, October 26, 2013

Oaxaca City Festivals, Oaxaca, Mexico

Reach Oaxaca City By Bus For Day Of The Dead
Reach Oaxaca by bus from Tucson for the end of October Day of the Dead celebration.
Update October 26, 2013

Oaxaca by Bus 
Reach Oaxaca from Tucson by first going to Guadalajara on Tufesa Bus and then taking Primera Plus Bus to Mexico City.  From Mexico City take ADO bus direct to Oaxaca City.

Day of the Dead Schedules Link to cemetery night schedules, places and times

Families decorate the tombs
during the Day of the Dead
Reach the Day of the Dead from
 the US Border via Tufesa Bus 
, Omnibus, or Chihuahuenses Bus 
and then ADO

Reach Oaxaca for the Easter Festival

Semana Santa, The Silent Parade, 

Oaxaca City Silent Parade through the cobbles streets 
of the old colonial city
Easter Week,
 Oaxaca Mexico, 

  •  Silent Parade

Easter is one of Oaxaca City's most important festivals.  
On the Friday before Easter Sunday, an unusual parade takes place in the cobbled streets of Oaxaca City, the Silent Parade.  
  • Good Friday
In the late afternoon and early evening of Good Friday during Holy Week in Oaxaca, a parade through the streets takes place as a prelude to the coming Easter celebration.  The parade is one of silence as it passes through the streets to re-enact the carrying of the cross to Mount Calvary by Jesus Christ on the day of the crucifixion.

This Silent Parade on Good Friday is a custom found throughout the Catholic world in Europe and was brought to Mexico by the Spanish colonists in the 1500s. 
 In the huge State of Oaxaca the celebration can have unique touches as the local ethnic cultures add their indigenous practices, particularly in remote mountain villages such as Apoala.
 The Silent Parade in Oaxaca City takes place on Friday of Holy Week or Semana Santa.  The celebration is a solemn march by hooded men carrying replica crosses and the many statues that have been removed from the churches for the occasion.    

From the European style churches, many built in the 1600s, the parade winds its way through the cobbled streets of the preserved colonial center of the city and makes stops along the way for prayers and for the recitation of the Stations of the Cross, a Catholic ritual of rememberance of the sufferings of Jesus. 
This twilight parade by hooded men and costumed women is indeed a solemn and spectacular event and  perhaps the most interesting of many unique festivals that take place in Oaxaca City.
  • Silent Parade in the Villages

Oaxaca City is surrounded by 10,000 foot mountains and is the center of a thriving indigenous population with 11 or so languages still spoken within the mountainous state.  The city was built in a valley at 5000 feet and the surrounding mountains have isolated the villages somewhat and perpetuated the speaking of the ancient languages and the practice of the old customs and many ancient rituals that are still practiced in the remote villages.

Oaxaca Bus Service connects the city with nearly every village and provides a way for the people of the mountains to visit the city for regional festivals.  The Semana Santa festival draws people from all over the State who bring a blend of beliefs and practices to Oaxaca City where they combine the colonial Spanish, modern European, and indigenous cultures to give Oaxaca a flair for spectacle unique in Mexico.
The costumes with the conical hoods
 are also found in European parades 
commemorating the crucifixion

Bus service and van service in Oaxaca City also makes it possible for visitors to visit the remote villages for the silent Parades and Easter Week festivals. 
Semana Santa in Oaxaca City or in the villages on the Friday before Easter is perhaps the most interesting of the many unique festivals that take place in Oaxaca.

Oaxaca City,  Silent Parade in front of
 Santo Domingo Church, Easter Week ,
Oaxaca City, Mexico

Reach Oaxaca from the US border by Tufesa Bus to Guadalajara, or Omnibus, or Estrella Blanca's Futura and Chihuahuenses Buses to Mexico City.  ADO Buses reach Oaxaca from Puebla
and Mexico City 

Next: Guelaguetza,
Day of the Dead
Night of the Radishes
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