Hiding behind the magical cloaks of wizardry, March sets foot into the “Capital of Witchcraft” swirling with the winds of mystery and myth. If you are an ardent disciple of the Hogwarts, passionate about spells and an avid fan of the likes of Harry Potter, then Catemaco, Mexico is the place for you this March!
The first Friday of March
Noche de Brujas (The Night of the Witches)
What’s the excitement all about?
Nestled on the beautiful shores of Laguna Catemaco and below the ridge of a volcanic mountain range, the Mexican town of Catemaco has long been considered the centre of Mexico’s witchcraft culture. Home to a deep rooted culture of wizards and magicians, which forms one of the main economic activities of the town, Catemaco is also known as the “Capital of Witchcraft”. The town plays host to the annual festival of “Noche de Brujas” i.e. “The Night of the Witches”. Practitioners gather from all nooks and corners of Mexico and celebrate their way through the magical weekend. Visitors throng the place, some to witness the mystique and some to seek consultation. The convention takes place on the hill of Cerro Mono Blanco.
The smoky clouds and aromas of incense, hypnotic chants, proclamations, performances and belly dances set the eerie yet mystifying mood of Noche de Brujas. The night is dotted by small tents of practitioners, healers and shamans offering services for personal cleansing, providing consultation for healing health problems, selling good-luck charms, etc. If black magic is something that has always struck a curious chord, or you wish to find a few answers through the dark arts, this is the place to be!
How did it all start?
Witchcraft in Mexico is an age old tradition with a mixture of ancient indigenous beliefs, medieval Spanish traditions and voodoo practices from West Africa. The idea of holding a convention struck a local shaman in the year 1970. Today, the festival has turned into a pompous affair with hundreds of healers and practitioners participating in the convention to perform a mass cleansing ceremony and rid themselves of the negative energies of the previous year.
The history and natural beauty of the town coupled with the surrounding jungle-like area add to the mystifying atmosphere. With an air of history, mystery and sub-tropical beauty, the festival is sure to mesmerize your souls, making the Noche de Brujas a night to remember!