VIVA LA INDEPENDENCIA!!
Mexican Independence Day celebrations begin on the 15th September and it is the most important national holiday observed in Mexico. On the night of the 15th September the President of Mexico rings the bell of the Palacio Nacional in Mexico City and cries the ‘Grito de Dolores’ and the names of the heroes of the Mexican War of Independence. He then shouts ‘Viva Mexico!’ joined by the people in the Zocalo waving the Mexican flag and then singing the Mexican National Anthem. This patriotic event draws up to half a million spectators from all over Mexico and tourists worldwide.
The Grito de Dolores also known as El Grito de la Independencia, began in the small town of Dolores, near Guanajuato on September 16, 1810. In 1810 a group of Mexicans planned to overthrow the Spanish regime who had brutally ruled their country for more than 300 years. They had planned to start the war on the 2nd October but this plan was discovered by the Spaniards so they were forced to start the revolt early. The local priest, Father Hidalgo rang the bell on the night of the 15th September calling his people to the church to deliver the speech now known as the ‘Grito de Dolores’ ending the speech by shouting ‘Viva Mexico! ‘ and ‘Viva la Independencia!’. The people armed themselves with knives and clubs and ancient guns to fight the Spanish on their march to Mexico City and the people of Mexico finally won their independence.
Similar celebrations take place in towns and cities all over Mexico and so if you would like to join in the celebrations in Cancun head down to the Palacio Municipal on the Avenida Tulum in downtown Cancun. Here you will find thousands of locals waiting to hear the bell and ‘El Grito’ followed by fireworks, music and dancing. It is a truly patriotic event and not to be missed if you happen to be in Cancun. If you do not make it to Downtown, ‘El Grito’ in Mexico City will be on TV and video screens in all the hotels and nightclubs throughout the Hotel Zone. Wherever you are you will enjoy the revelry.
The next day, September 16, is a national holiday and is celebrated with parades and marching bands throughout the country. The Mexican Armada parade is a historic military parade in Cancun and is attended by thousands.
For more information on events in Cancun and the most up to date information for your vacation visit http://cancun.travel/en/.