Cozumel is set for 10 days of music, rodeos, feasts and more traditional fun, with the island's annual El Cedral Festival.

This year's historical celebration takes place from Friday, April 26 to Sunday, May 5, 2013.

 

The event's full name is the Festival of El Cedral and the Fiestas of Santa Cruz and the celebrations are held each year at the small village of El Cedral, in the south of Cozumel.

Cozumel events
Colorful traditional displays.

 

This traditional event is over 150 years old and is thought to have been first established by Casimiro Cárdenas.

Cárdenas was part of a group that escaped to the island during the War of the Castes after their village of Saban on the mainland came under vicious attack, killing many of the other inhabitants.

Fleeing from the carnage, Cárdenas is said to have arrived in Cozumel still clutching a small wooden cross.

Legend has it that Cárdenas vowed to honor the crucifix's religious strength by founding an annual festival wherever he settled.

From this came part of the official name of today's celebrations - the Fiestas of Santa Cruz - or Festival of the Holy Cross.

El Cedral Cozumel
Small village of El Cedral.

Some unconfirmed reports suggest that the first festival was also the first time a Catholic mass was held in Cozumel.

Cedral 2013 Cozumel
Bullfights, rodeos and more.

 

Today, excited local partygoers enjoy the traditional Yucatecan and Mexican food, as well as music, dancing, competitions, rodeos, bullfights and plenty of ice cold Mexican beer.

If you are in Cozumel at the end of this month, don't miss out.

Just make your way down to El Cedral, many events are free and both locals and visitors are welcome to join in the fun!

Find the full full program on our El Cedral Event information page.

You can also see the town of El Cedral at any time on the following excursions:

Cozumel Private Taxi Tour.

Cozumel ATV Tour.

ATV Jungle Snorkel Combo.

Xrail Jungle Buggy Madness.

Xrail Sightseeing Adventure.