Day of the Dead, or Dia de los Muertos, is a holiday that has been celebrated on November 1–2 in Mexico for many years and has gained a following recently in New Mexico. The holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember loved ones who have passed on, and help support their spiritual journey.

The Day of the Dead is a time for the dead to return home and visit loved ones, feast on their favorite foods and listen to their favorite music. (Photo: TOURISM Santa Fe)

Traditions connected with the holiday include building private altars called ofrendas; honoring the deceased using sugar skulls, marigolds, and their favorite foods and beverages; and by visiting graves with these gifts.

Day of the Dead traditions have crossed over into U.S. mainstream culture and are enjoyed by all ages. (Photo courtesy of TOURISM Santa Fe)

Whether you have long celebrated the holiday, or are just learning about it, here are a few events in Santa Fe that honor this cultural tradition.

2018 Dia de los Muertos Events in Santa Fe

Dia de los Muertos is celebrated throughout the city each fall. Here are few events you might want to attend, participate and observe.

Skull painting is a popular art form in Santa Fe. (Photo: TOURISM Santa Fe)

A Santa Fe favorite, the Musuem of International Folk Art hosts “Celebrate Dia de Los Muertos/Day of the Dead” at Museum Hill on Sunday October 28, 2018. Head over to decorate sugar skulls and make picture frames. Visitors are invited to bring flowers, candles and/or a memento to add to the community altar. Sample traditional Mexican treats like pan de muerto (bread of the dead). There will also be a skeleton/calavera face painting station. The museum shop also has a good selection of Muertos items for sale.

Bring the family and learn the art of sugar skull making. (Photo courtesy of Museum of International Folk Art)

The Poeh Cultural Center will be opening their 10th annual Dia De Los Muertos Exhibit on October 26, 2018. The exhibit, which will feature the works of established as well as emerging New Mexico Hispanic and Native American artists, celebrates the rich artistic and spiritual traditions as expressed in jewelry, painting, sculpture and photography.

Teatro Paraguas will host their 5th Annual Dia De Los Muertos Community Celebration, on November 2-4, 2018. Enjoy an exciting line-up of live music, a puppet play, staged cuentos (folk-tales), a medley of songs from the movie Coco, and a short classic comedy.  Teatro Paraguas will also have an alter to honor “those who came before” set up in the theater lobby and the public is welcome to bring photos and mementos of relatives to add.


Meow Wolf will also be hosting a Dia de los Murtos celebration on Friday, November 2nd, 2018. The celebration will feature live music throughout the night, headlined by local favorites Nosotros. Tickets are $15 in advance, or $18 at the door.

Dia de los Muertos Shopping

No trip is complete without a trip to Doodlets for Day of the Dead. (Photo courtesy of Doodlets)

In the heart of Santa Fe is a special little shop filled with laughter and joy, enchantment and whimsy. This shop, Doodlets is a Santa Fe favorite especially during the Dia de los Muertos season.

Many Day of the Dead figurines depict ordinary daily life as a reminder of our time on Earth. (Photo courtesy of TOURISM Santa Fe)

Yippee-Yi-Yo is another Day of the Dead shop located off the historic Santa Fe Plaza. Located on  E. San Francisco Street, you’ll find muertos figurines and many brightly decorated skulls. The Catrina figurine is a favorite.

If you’re looking for that special gift for someone who LOVES Dia de los Muertos, Ortega’s has your piece. (Photo: TOURISM Santa Fe)

Ortega's on the Plaza carries Day of the Dead sterling silver jewelry by artists Shane Casis, Gregory Segura and Tom Dewitt.

If you can’t visit Mexico, you can absorb much of the culture and feel of this treasured holiday right here in Santa Fe! To plan your next trip during the observation of Dia de los Muertos in Santa Fe, order your official [blog_link url="" text="Santa Fe Travel Guide" date="2018-10-18"]!

We’re sure you’ll find everything you need in the guide for the perfect Santa Fe getaway. Please don’t forget to check out our [blog_link url="" text="Deals and Specials" date="2018-10-18"].