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Saint James and the Moors: Mexico's Tastoanes Carol Wheeler

Masked dancers take to the streets on July 25 to reenact an age old battle fought in Spain long before the conquest. The ceremonial tastoan (sometimes spelled tastuan) rituals come from the 12th century and were originally known as the dance of the Moors and the Christians. In Spain's version, the dance symbolizes the expulsion of the Moors by the Christians, while Mexico's variation is commonly interpreted as the representation of the Spanish conquest of Mexico in the 1500s. read more

May in Mexico: Fiestas galore Carol Wheeler

Santa Elena
In Mexico, May seems much shorter than it does north of the border. There are so many holidays that the country seems to call a halt to the normal workweek and honor almost everyone.
It actually begins on April 30 with the Dia del Niño, when children are honored with gifts and treats, and classes are canceled for a day of fun. Labor Day — May 1 — follows immediately with parades in every city and town. May 3 is the feast day of the Holy Cross. The Battle of Puebla is commemorated on the 5th — el Cinco de Mayo, perhaps a bigger event in the U.S. and Canada. May 10 is always Mother's Day... read more

September in Mexico: El Mes de la Patria Carol Wheeler

September in Mexico is known as El Mes de la Patria — the month of our country. While 5 de Mayo is celebrated with great fanfare north of the border, September comes alive with patriotic fervor in Mexico. Beginning with the first week in September, pushcarts offer flags of all sizes, trumpets, sombreros and noisemakers, all in patriotic red, white and green. read more

Playa Los Arcos: Mexican family ambience in Puerto Vallarta's picturesque Old Town Carol Wheeler

"Hotel Playa Los Arcos is the prettiest hotel in Puerto Vallarta's Old Town," a Canadian travel writer told me. I think she's right. But more than pretty, Playa Los Arcos is traditionally Mexican, from the design that sets the rooms around a central patio to the décor, the music and the staff uniforms — restaurant personnel dress as charros or gentleman horsemen, and housekeepers wear the colorful full skirts of folkloric dancers. read more

Good Friday in San Miguel de Allende Carol Wheeler

Holy Week — from Palm Sunday through Easter Sunday — is observed throughout Mexico. However San Miguel de Allende's fervor and pageantry are some of the most powerful and beautiful. The image of E... read more

Anthony Wright pens his first Mexico novel: Infernal Drums Carol Wheeler

I first came to Mexico in early 1992, and it was very much a deliberate choice since it is obviously a long way from Australia. Not exactly a run over the border. My plans were to travel around the world for a year and return to Australia. I was determined to write in Mexico because I was interested in the Beats and the fact that William Burroughs wrote Junkie in Mexico City. read more

Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexican art Carol Wheeler

The Virgin of Guadalupe first appeared in Mexico in 1531 to Juan Diego and, as proof of her visit, caused roses to bloom at the site. Because church leaders did not believe he had seen her, she instruc... read more

Music, food fest, film and art visit Mazamitla Carol Wheeler

From July 16-18, Mazamitla hosts three days of music, art, gastronomy, film and more. read more
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