lifestyle, travel This is Cozumel

The folk of the small village of El Cedral in Cozumel are almost ready for their biggest party of the year, the Festival of El Cedral, which begins on Tuesday.

The annual event — with the full name the Festival of El Cedral and the Fiestas of Santa Cruz — will run from Tuesday, April 23 to Friday, May 3, this year.

As well as the traditional rodeos, bullfights, riding displays, music, dancing, horse racing and roast meat feasts, this year's festival-goers will be treated to a live open-air performance by top Mexican cumbia music group, Los Angeles Azules, on Tuesday, April 30 at 10pm at the village bull ring.

This annual local event is thought to be over 170 years old and started by an early settler to the island who was fleeing war on the mainland.

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

The celebrations are open every year to locals and visitors alike. If you would like to attend, be ready for the dust from thousands of hooves and dancing revellers' feet!

Visit our Tourist Information section for more Cozumel Events.

Photos courtesy of Cozumel Municipal Government.

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

Cozumel Taxi Tour.

Cozumel ATV Tour.

Xrail Jungle Buggy Madness.