Christmas at Lake Chapala – Ajijic

December 22, 2012

Christmas is a special time at Lake Chapala, Mexico. Yes, perhaps a bit more special than in other parts of the world. Lake Chapala – Ajijic still has a small town atmosphere; and like Mexico in general has resisted the commercialization of the celebration.

Yes, presents are exchanged, but Santa Claus has not caught on to nearly the degree that he has in the USA or Canada, not that the merchants aren’t trying.

Presents are exchanged on Christmas Eve (Noche Buena) and most people here go to Mass that evening to celebrate the the Christ Child’s birth.

After Mass, families have the evening meal at home with their family and place the Baby Jesus in the manger in the Nativity scene.

A popular drink served at Christmas time is a type of special drink made from various types of fresh fruit not unlike the spice tea many North Americans serve.

Sometimes the spice tea which will have lumps of the fruit in it is spiked with a bit of rum or brandy (or, of course, tequila!).

At least this is how we do it at my Mexican Mother-in-law's house.

Now here’s another  day not to forget in December if you have Mexican friends or family like I do.

The day is December 28th each year. In Mexico this day is 'Día de los santos inocentes' or 'Day of the Innocent Saints' and is not unlike April Fool’s Day in the USA or Canada.

Tricks are played on each other or wild stories are told. Even the news media gets involved not unlike the weathermen in the USA seeing Santa on radar.

New Year’s Eve presents another opportunity for a celebration and like most celebrations here a mass is associated with the celebration traditionally held at midnight.

At this mass thanks are given for all the blessings received throughout the year and prayers go up for guidance and blessings for the New Year to come.

Chapala Jan 08 Christmas Scenes too 002

Another tradition on News Year’s Eve (also referred to as 'Nochevieja') or 'The Old Night' is the tradition in which you eat 12 grapes, one with each stroke of the clock sounding the midnight hour.

Each grape represents a month of the coming year. Somehow this is supposed to bring you good luck all year long if you eat all twelve of the grapes.

New Year’s Day, like Christmas Day is usually spent quietly at home with the family.

So, come visit us at this special time of the year. I’ll leave the light on for you (The Christmas lights too !)

Feliz Navidad a todos, Tu amigo, Sid


  • Joseph N. Caucci

    Can you give me any advise for plane fare to Mexico? From Philadelphia around the end of December? What would be the most economical way to fly to say, Guadalajara?

  • Sid

    Hi Joseph, Thanks for your question. Plane fares vary so much depending upon many different factors, but let me refer you to the article on this website that does tell about a new carrier from the New York area.

    It’s under the Travel Tab at the top of the home page here at ChapalaClub.

    You can sometimes get a better deal on line if you try several alternate dates, Be sure and use one of the travel sites with a search engine that compares prices and airlines. Check to see if the tax is included in the price.

    Another tip is to fly into and out of the various airline hub cities (their home base). American flies out of Dallas, Delta out of Atlanta. Continental out of Houston etc.

    So check flights from PA to DFW and then on the Guadalajara (GDL)via American or from PA to Houston via Cont. to GDL.

    I can find RT fares around $500 from DFW (DAllas) to GDL usually.

    Good Luck. Let me know when your coming and you can book a free area tour with me here at Lake Chapala.

    Siempre tu amigo, Sid

  • Doreen Davies

    I have booked Jan. 25 to Feb. 8 to be in Ajijic and am interested in your tour of the area. Looking so forward to my first visit there.

  • Sid Grosvenor

    Hi Doreen, Hope you got my e mail OK. Glad to give ou a gratis area wide tour. You can look as as many or as few homes as you want along the way.

    The idea is to let you take a look at the various towns, villages, and developments as you would like so you can see what appeals to you.

    Along the way we’ll answer any and all of your questions about living, working, and playing here at beautiful and affordable Lake Chapala, Mexico. Siempre tu amigo, Sid

  • Nyvaeh

    Ya learn sotmeinhg new everyday. It’s true I guess!

  • Jacklyn Llewicki

    OK MY FRIENDS, Here she comes–watch out for Jacqueline Lewicki–I did find a great buy for my plane fare….
    with Verybest Travel, for $380.00 round trip from Tijuana, MX……….. if you can get to San Diego n a cheap is your bargain….
    Hope that helps some people…..

    I am looking forward to come on Bastille Day, July 14, 2011
    and meet some of those Expats………….and see the area….

    Love and Peace, Jacqueline

  • Sid Grosvenor

    Hi Jacqueline, Good information. Flights inside Mexico are much less expensive.

    A relatively new airline, Volares recently charged about $2500 pesos (approximately $215 USD) round trip to Mexicali, Mexico (across the border from Calexico, California)from Guadalajara.

    Watch for hidden fees. Tu amigo, Sid

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