lifestyle, travel This is Cozumel

There is only a week to go until the start of this year's historic El Cedral Festival in Cozumel.

April 28 to May 3, 2012, will see a celebration of rodeos, bullfights, music, dancing, feasts and more, all centered around the old village of El Cedral in the south of the island.


This annual local event is thought to be over 150 years old and was started by an early settler to the island who was fleeing war on the mainland.

With the official title of the Festival of El Cedral and the Fiestas of Santa Cruz, the celebrations are open to locals and visitors alike.

Cozumel El Cedral
Colorful traditional displays.


The tradition was first established by Casimiro Cárdenas, one of a band that fled to the island during the War of the Castes after seeing many of his companions killed in a vicious attack on his village of Saban on the Yucatan Peninsula.

Running from the slaughter, Cárdenas is said to have escaped to Cozumel whilst 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.

Festival of the Holy Cross
Small town of El Cedral.

One account also says that the inaugural festival was the first time Catholic mass was held on the island.

Cozumel bullfighting
Bullfights, rodeos and beer.


Nowadays, rowdy revellers enjoy traditional Yucatecan and Mexican feasts and parties, as well as music, dancing, competitions, rodeos, bullfights and plenty of ice cold Mexican beer.

And, if you find yourself in Cozumel at the end of this month, you too can be part of the excitement.

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

See the full program on our Facebook page or visit our website for more Cozumel Events.

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

Cozumel Dune Buggy Tour.

Cozumel Jeep Tour.

Cozumel ATV Tour.

ATV Jungle Snorkel Combo.

Xrail Jungle Buggy Madness.

Xrail Sightseeing Adventure.