The Taino have played a very important role in the history of Puerto Rico, and many of the customs and traditions of the Taino are still being practiced in the country. It is estimated that approximately sixty percent of the population in Puerto Rico are descendants of the Taino, and staying in touch with their roots are extremely important to them. One tradition of the Taino that can be experienced today is the drinking of Mabì; which is used to celebrated an elaborate festival in the city of Juana Diaz.
Visitors to the southern coastal city of Juana Diaz are usually fascinated by its welcoming atmosphere and attractions such as the Lucero Caves, Three Kings Museum, Holy Kings Monument and Guayabal Lagoon that make Juana Diaz a popular destination. But to truly experience the life and festivities of the city, visitors are advised to travel to Juana Diaz during the Mavi Carnival, as it is a celebration that sees the entire city come to life, and should not be missed.
The city of Juana Diaz is affectionately known as Mabì City (La Ciudad del Mabì) which refers to the fermented Mabì beverage that was introduced by the Taino. It is produced from the bark of ironwood trees (Colubrina reclinata) and in most households across Puerto Rico, this drink is enjoyed with friends and family. During the Mavi Carnival however, it is used to celebrate legendary folklores, which is accompanied with rhythmic music, dancing, colorful costumes, parades, floats food and the carnival queen crowning. Celebrations begin in the mornings and continue throughout the night. It is a festival that can be enjoyed by the entire family, so no-one will have to sit out from the celebratory action.
The Mavi Carnival is not only an opportunity to join in on a cultural discovery of the city, but partake in an ancient tradition that has been passed down through the generations. Reminders of the Taino are scattered across Puerto Rico, but to be able to taste a part of history is a truly unique experience and it is all available at the Mavi Carnival.