To Fly in Honor of Santiago, The Apostle.

(Travel) – A key event during one of the many “Fiestas de Santiago” festivities in Mexico, the dancing and flying men of Cuetzalan (not to be confused with The Flying Men of Papantla) offer an amazing spectacle with plenty of cultural and religious meaning.


They are a favorite at the “Fiestas” de Santiago Yancuictlalpan, celebreated each year near Cuetzálan Puebla, a few hours from Mexico City. This is not just a show, it is a tradition for which each one of the flying men prepares during several days prior to the big moment. The preparation includes fasting, prayer, solidarity in community, and reflection.

In some occasions, this may be a passing ceremony for a young man, and to be included in this group is considered an honor.


The “Fiestas de Santiago Apostol” celebrated on July 25 each year, are a well attended festivity for those who religiously celebrate this and other Catholic traditions. I attended this event and took video with my Iphone in July, 2012, and I must say it felt magical to witness the religiosity and fervor of this important group of Native-Mexicans –many of them speak Nahuatl in addition to Spanish.

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FLYNG MEN in Santiago Yancuictlalpan (Cuetzalan, Edo. de Puebla), Mexico.

Every culture and subculture has its rituals, conventions, and traditions. Check out the Flying Men from Puebla, and men wearing costumes and dancing for a very important religious celebration! In this video, people celebrate and come to see “Los Voladores at “Las Fiestas de Santiago Yancuictlalpan,” near Cuetzálan Puebla, in Mexico.

Las Fiestas de Santiago Apostol son celebradas cada 25 de Julio. El video lo tomé con mi Iphone en Julio del 2012.

Beautiful People in Cuetzalan, Puebla, Mexico.

men are handsome, soft-spoken, and courteous to tourists and visitors. Cuetzalan, its name derived from the beautiful bird known as Quetzal is a magical town in the middle of nowhere up in the sierras, in the northern part of Puebla, a Mexican state. It was founded 200 BC and conquered in 1522 by Spain.

Today, while writing an article in Spanish for El Mensajero Newspaper about how safe it is to travel in Mexico these days, many pictures and memories came out from a recent visit to this magical town. Cuetzalan is, in my opinion, a nation that speaks first Nahuatl, then Spanish, living in Mexican territory.

Traveling alone this summer in Cuetzalan, Puebla and other places through Mexico, has been safe, fun and interesting. Traveling to Mexico is more safe than what the news outlets have shown, and it also takes common sense from the visitors.

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Back to the reason I am posting… I’ve found Cuetzalan’s men handsome and polite, and it was fun to see couples together, and how a man takes care of his woman, as it was good to see many indigenous women alone, working, selling, walking…so strong.

Men or women, observing Cuetzalan’s locals was a good experience. Their faces are mine or yours because at the end we are all part of the same family, isn’t that true?

Text and pictures by Lupita Peimbert