December is the month of celebrations in Guatemala. While Christmas and New Year's Eve are a pair of the main Guatemalan National Holidays and Events celebrated you will find others. There are in reality over 370 fiestas celebrated all year long. This is not surprising considering that Guatemalans desire to celebrate national holidays and fiestas (condensed list). During December month these celebrations occur:
December 7th Quema del Diablo (Burning in the Devil)
La Quena del Diablo is a symbolic cleansing ceremony where trash along with a symbolic devil are burned to get rid bad spirits and negative opinions. The celebration happens yesterday the start of Christmas, with all the Feast of Conception, December 8th. Rudy Girn, Antigua Daily Photo and Luke Maguire Armstrong's article described La Quena del Diablo celebrations. Check out these images of La Quena del Diablo.
December 12th Dia de la Virgen de Guadalupe (Feast of Our Lady Guadalupe).
Virgen de Guadalupe Celebration is usually a religious celebration where children clothe themselves with typical clothing and pay homage on the Virgen de Guadalupe (Our Lady of Guadalupe). Photos from your celebration are posted inside the Revue.
December 16-24 Las Posadas (The Inns)
In many towns in Guatemala throughout the nine days before Christmas small processions called Las Posadas are held. These processions usually occur after dark. They start on December 16th and attempt to Christmas Eve evening. The Christmas carols are sung, because procession walks over the neighborhood carry figures of Mary and Joseph, seeking lodging for that holy family.
December 21st Dia del Santo Tomas (Feast of Saint Thomas)
In Guatemala the Feast of Saint Thomas is adaptation on the Mayan flying men dance to a Christmas religious practice. It is celebrated on December 21st. The biggest celebration of the event occur in Chichichastenango. You can also look at Priyank's post on Mexican celebrations.
December 24/25th Navidad (Christmas Eve/Day)
December 24/25 needs no introduction however a Guatemalan Christmas is usually a mixture of Mayan and Catholic traditions. Guatemala is abundant with religious tradition and a lot of such traditions center around food. December and Christmas specifically is really a time for special foods. Guatemalan Christmas food includes chicken, Chiles Rellenos, fish, tamales, turkey. In terms of drinks and desserts ponche (fruit punch) and bunuelos are usually the most frequent ones.
Guatemalan dulces (sweets) are really popular at the moment.
December 28th El Dia de los Inocentes (All Fools Day)
This is often a day a lot like All Fool's Day but celebrated in Guatemalan style.
December 31st Fin del Ano (New Year's Eve)
Without doubt New Year's Eve is very popular in Guatemala. Although fireworks certainly are a section of all celebrations throughout every season on New Year's Eve it tops a list.
December is often a great month to travel to Guatemala if you love celebrations. For details on Christmas foods and events please look at Antigua Daily Photo. Also for the detailed description of Guatemalan Christmas traditions see Christmas in Guatemala.
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