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What you should know about “Día de los Muertos” in Ecuador

At the beginning of November most Latin American countries celebrate Día de los Muertos. This celebration consists in vigils and visits to the cemeteries where flowers and traditional food are taken to the deceased. In this guide we want to let you know a bit more about how this day is celebrated in Ecuador.

Two different worlds.

In Ecuador as in great part of South America, the blend of cultures is embodied in many aspects of our culture. The Catholic tradition establishes that November the 1st is the start of Día de los Muertos and the indigenous people accepted it as part of their rituals.

This is a very interesting tradition, you can learn more about the mix of both cultures as it is evidenced in the cemetery of  Otavalo. Here two cemeteries exist in the same place one mixed (for people with European ascendance) where the tombs are very orderly and sober. And the indigenous where you can often see families sharing a meal next to the grave of a loved one.

Food.

The culture and traditions are also reflected in the gastronomy as in the case of the preparation of “Colada morada”, a hot and thick beverage which is made with about 20 ingredients, among those the purple corn flour stands out, fruits and unique plants that are found in the Ecuadorian Andes.

The “Colada morada” is complemented with the “Guaguas de pan”, child-shaped figures made with french brioche dough, that usually have jam filling inside.

Guaguas de pan and Colada Morada

In the Latin American culture death has a very deep meaning that is reflected in these kind of traditions. Most celebrations of the “Dia de los Muertos” are open to the public, but it is advisable to contact a local family to learn more about the traditions.

 

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