Dia de los Muertos is known as Day of the Dead – a Mexican holiday where all the family members gather together to celebrate and remember their loved ones who passed away. It is a two-day festival where the first day November 1 is celebrated to honor dead children and infants whereas the second day November 2 is celebrated to honor dead adults.
Day of the dead holiday traditions includes cleaning and decorating the graves of the loved ones with marigold flowers and offer their favorite foods to the departed souls.
All Saints’ Day coincides with day 1 of the Day of the Dead and the November 2 is celebrated as All Souls’ Day.
Day of the Dead Traditions
1. Dia de los Muertos 2 Day Festival
Learn about the history of Day of the Dead festivals on National Geographic. In true National Geographic style, the images are gorgeous and you can see how beautiful the “celebration of death as a part of the human experience” can be.
2. History & Modern Travel to Dia de los Muertos
In Pre-Hispanic times, the dead were buried close to family homes (often in a tomb underneath the central patio of the house) and there was great emphasis on maintaining ties with deceased ancestors, who were believed to continue to exist on a different plane.
-Get to know Day of the Dead origins and history from Trip Savvy
3. Dia de los Muertos Traditions
Celebrate the life of dead with these traditions at DayoftheDead. Dive deeper into 10 traditions of this special holiday: Dia de los Angelitos, Ofrenda, Day of the Dead Festivals, Papel Picado, La Catrina, Sugar Skulls, Day of the Dead Food, Alebrijes, Oil Clothes and Day of the Dead Flower, Marigold.
4. Dia de los Muertos Altar
Making your altar for Day of the Dead includes a lot of steps, this post from Hallmark shares a personal story with gorgeous pictures of Maria who created an altar for her mother.
Dia de los muertos Recipes
5. Cook Traditional Day of the Dead Food
Any celebration is not complete without food. Learn about what special recipes are made as part of this vibrant tradition from Growing Up Bilingual. She highlights her favorite traditional recipes: Potato Pan de Muerto, Tortillas de Cempazuchitl, Guatemalan Molletes, Marigold Infused Tequila, Guatemalan Fiambre, Atole de Vainilla, Tamales de Rajas, Spicy Mexican Hot Chocolate, Calabaza en Tacha, Sugar Skulls, Conchas, Jalapeno and Cactus Tamales, Cafe de Olla, Enfrijoladas and Mole.
6. Make Celebration Food for Dia de los Muertos
Here are more delicious Day of the Dead party food and recipes from Delish. They are a little less traditional and more transitional: Skeleton Oreo Pops, Chicken Tamale Pie, Horchata de Arroz, Skull Cake, Skeleton Pumpkin Caramel Pie, Skeleton Candy Apples, Pozole, Margarita, Tortilla Soup, Tamale Pies, and Dulce de Leche Pastry Pockets.
7. Sweet Treats for Day of the Dead
Hungry Happenings has got you covered for themed treats and food for Dia de los Muertos. She has the mad skills to teach you how to create intricate patterns and colorful celebration food for the holiday even if you are a beginner.
8. Homemade Sugar Skulls
Learn how to make sugar skulls from the scratch at Art Is Fun . This is the best and easiest tutorial around with simple step by step instructions on how to start with plain granulated sugar and end up with a Sugar Skull work of art.
9. Bake Dia de los Muertos Cake
Make your own cake for your Day of the Dead party using the recipe from Pint Sized Baker. This gorgeous cake has many of the traditional decorations and is colorful and yummy.
Day of the Dead Art & Crafts
10. Make an Ofrenda
Learn how to make an ofrenda step by step at Happy thought. Use the printable Ofrenda templates and then cut, paste and fold this colorful craft.
11. Handmade Cempazuchitl
Decorate your altars with DIY marigold flowers. We love how colorful and simple this craft can be even for younger kids. Another way to make paper flowers can be found here!
12. Homemade Papel Picado Craft
This simple way to create your own homemade papel picado is easy and fun. It makes a great kids craft and holiday decoration.
13. Make a Dia de los Muertos Headpiece
Make this beautiful headpiece to wear on the Day of the Dead from Tikkido. These handmade headbands with silk flowers, ribbon and lace are so pretty and perfect for your celebration and festival.
14. Craft a Day of the Dead Wreath
Hang this fantastic wreath to decorate your doors and to welcome the holy spirits from Soiree Event Design. Cover your wreath with sugar skulls and beautiful flowers like marigolds.
15. Easy Day of the Dead Mask Craft for Kids
This Day of the dead mask template can be printed, cut out and decorated to be used as a decoration or wear for Dia de los Muertos celebration.
16. Create Sugar Skull Art with Balloons
This sugar skull balloon backdrop is so cute from Oh Happy Day. The massive sugar skull design is gorgeous and could be scaled for any setting or event celebration.
17. Make a Sugar Skull Banner
Use this sugar skull banner to decorate the altars during your Day of the Dead celebration from Hello Little Home.
18. Sugar Skull Planters
Make these cute sugar skull planters using hollow sugar skulls from Houseful of Handmade. Check out some other easy DIY sugar skull planter ideas here!
19. Craft Sugar Skull Balloons
Check out these beautiful crafts from skull balloons to paper decorations from Hodge Podge Craft.
20. Make a Decorative Day of the Dead Coffin Box
This creative take on Dia de los Muertos craft includes a printable from Growing Up Bilingual. You can make the cutest coffin gift box or decoration with these simple steps.
21. More Dia de los Muertos Crafts You Want to Make
Don’t miss this ultimate list of Day of the Dead crafts from Crafty Chica.
Dia De Los Muertos Activities
21. Day of the Dead Pumpkin Carving Activity
Use this free printable set of templates to create intricate sugar skull pumpkin carving even if you haven’t carved a pumpkin before.
22. Color & Decorate Sugar Skulls
These sugar skull coloring pages for kids are surely one of a kind and come with a tutorial on how to color and shade them. We also have some gorgeous zentangle sugar skull coloring pages that you don’t want to miss!
23. Color Day of the Dead Coloring Pages
Download and print these free Day of the Dead coloring pages and use them as entertainment during a festival or in preparation for the holiday!
24. Day of the Dead Worksheets for Kids
25. Fun Dia de los Muertos Activities for Kids
There are lots of kids activities ideas for Dia de los Muertos from the Crafty Crow.
26. Free Dia de los Muertos Printable Games to Print
27. Day of the Dead Toys
Each year over the last few years, Mattel has released a Day of the Dead Barbie that we just adore. The Dia de Muertos doll has so many beautiful details and works as a toy and decoration.
How are you celebrating Dia de los Muertos? What are your kids favorite Day of the Dead activities?