The Three Wise Men Day    Dia de Reyes

After New Year’s Day, Mexican families still have a very special date to commemorate and enjoy.  On January 6, most of the Hispanic world & culture celebrates El Dia De Reyes, the Epiphany, remembering the day when the Three Wise Men following the star to Bethlehem, arrived bearing their treasured gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh for the Baby Jesus.  

Picture by Tito Caballero

Picture by Tito Caballero

The Reyes Magos In  La Alameda                                          

A couple of days earlier, the children write their letters to the Wise Men, or to their favorite Rey Mago: Melchor, Gaspar, or Baltasar, asking for the presents they would like to receive. 

During the evenings before the great celebration on January 6, families go to the Alameda, in Mexico City, a beautiful park that dates back to the Colonial era. There, every year, hundreds of stands are placed with food and toys, but best of all, there are sets, where the children can have their pictures taken with the Three Kings of the Orient. This has been a tradition in the Mexican culture for centuries now.

Children with Los Reyes Magos

Hundreds of multicolored balloons, filled with helium, are sold during the season, so the little ones can attach their letters to them, and have them fly, up to the sky, carrying all their wishes with them.

Children Sending their letter to Los Reyes Magos

Balloon Carrying the Children's Letter to The Wise Men

Balloon Carrying the Children’s Letters

 If they forgot their letters at home, there is no need to worry, there are also salesmen that offer writing paper and envelopes specially designed for the occasion and addressed to the Reyes Magos. This lovely tradition of going to Alameda park is passed on from one generation to another.  I have a picture of my husband, when a small child, with the Reyes Magos, set on a photo album alongside some photographs of my children with them.