Travel & Places Mexico

Where to Celebrate "El Grito" for Mexican Independence Day

What is "El Grito":

The Grito de Dolores is the call that Miguel Hidalgo made for the people of Mexico to rise up against the authorities of New Spain on September 16, 1810, in the town of Dolores, near Guanajuato, initiating Mexico's War of Independence. This event is commemorated every year in Mexico on the night of September 15th. People gather in the Zocalos, town squares and plazas to participate in the patriotic fervor.

The words of the Grito may vary, but they go something like this:
¡Vivan los heroes que nos dieron patria! ¡Viva!
¡Viva Hidalgo! ¡Viva!
¡Viva Morelos! ¡Viva!
¡Viva Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez! ¡Viva!
¡Viva Allende! ¡Viva!
¡Vivan Aldama y Matamoros! ¡Viva!
¡Viva nuestra independencia! ¡Viva!
¡Viva Mexico! ¡Viva!
¡Viva Mexico! ¡Viva!
¡Viva Mexico! ¡Viva!

At the end of the third ¡Viva Mexico! the crowd goes wild waving flags, ringing noisemakers and spraying foam. Then fireworks light up the sky as the crowd cheers. Later the Mexican national anthem is sung.

Where to Celebrate "El Grito":

If you are spending Mexican Independence Day in Mexico, and you enjoy being part of a large crowd, then you should make your way to the town plaza of whatever city you happen to be in by around 10 pm (or earlier to get a good spot) on September 15th to participate in el grito. The best destinations are:
  • Mexico City
    In Mexico City's main square, the Zocalo, the Mexican president initiates the grito from the balcony of the Palacio Nacional as hundreds of thousands of onlookers cheer. The grito is followed by singing the National Anthem, and fireworks.

  • Dolores Hidalgo
    This small town in Guanajuato state is known as the Cradle of Mexican Independence. Here you can celebrate the anniversary of Hidalgo's cry for independence in the town where it originated. On the morning of the 16th of September there is a civic parade, and other festivities to commemorate the occasion.
  • Queretaro
    This UNESCO World Heritage city is the birthplace of the heroine of Mexico's independence movement, Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez, often referred to as La Corregidora, who got word out to Hidalgo that the royal forces were on to the insurgents' plans, prompting him to initiate the war (earlier than originally planned). The town celebrates in a grand manner, with fireworks and a festive atmosphere.
  • San Miguel de Allende
    The birthplace of Ignacio Allende, one of the leaders of the Mexican independence movement, San Miguel de Allende is a lovely colonial city which is very popular with expats. Celebrations here are exuberant, and since the town's Fiesta de San Miguel takes place around the same dates, there's plenty to see and do.

?Noche Mexicana:

There are alternative ways to celebrate Mexico's independence, however. Many restaurants, hotels and nightclubs offer special Noche Mexicana celebrations, among other events taking place that night. It's a fun night for partying out on the town.

More Independence Day Resources:

If you would like to celebrate Mexican Independence Day at home, have a look at our article about how to throw a Cinco de Mayo party - you'll find lots of resources for planning a Mexican fiesta. Also check out: 10 Ways to Celebrate Mexican Independence Day.

Read more about Mexican Independence Day, or see photos of Mexican Independence Day celebrations.

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