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Spending the holidays in a warm climate can always make it difficult to get into the holiday spirit. Luckily when spending the Holidays in Peru there are so many places you can have a great time and enjoy the festivities with family and friends. Here’s the best things to do when spending the Holidays in Peru.

Around the Holidays take advantage of the many malls in Lima to get into the Christmas spirit. During the Holidays in Peru small concerts and events are regularly planned as well as the classic mall Santa. Take some time to get your own shopping down or enjoy the decorations and some hot chocolate. We would recommend a visit to LarcoMar or Jockey Plaza in Lima to enjoy the atmosphere.

Holidays in Peru

Around all corners of Peru, families will be getting together for Christmas Dinner on December 24th. The local markets will be full with colorful stalls of all the fruits and veggies from all parts of Peru. Restaurants are typically open until around 9pm allowing you to taste some great Peruvian Cuisine with your loved ones. Hotels often also arrange for their own Christmas Dinners so make sure you plan ahead of time. For restaurant recommendations and city maps we recommend a good guidebook, and lucky for you Lonely Planet is releasing their newest addition November 2021.

Holidays in Peru Lima
Lima’s Plaza de Armas

The Holidays in Peru bring out the best in Peruvians, and we are social people. One of the best places to enjoy a Christmas or New Years Eve are our Plaza de Armas. Each city or town in Peru has a main plaza where the locals congregate. Expect to find lively celebrations around these areas. They are normally centric and most of the towns best restaurants and hotels are usually located in close proximity. They are also a great place to take pictures as they are decorated to fit the season.

If you are in Peru visiting Machu Picchu then you are likely in or around Cusco, we recommend their lively celebration at the main Plaza de Armas where you will be able to enjoy a drink and dancing through the night. Due to the sheer amount of travelers most of the night clubs are also open where you will be able to enjoy the midnight celebrations if you are more of a night owl. Even during the day there will be parades and more vendors around then usual selling their wares and tempting you to try some of the tastiest local snacks.

Fireworks are the Highlight of the Holidays in Peru

Regardless of where you are in Peru there will be fireworks at midnight. If spending the Holidays in Peru try to book a hotel with a view or book a room at higher floors. It is best celebrated in Lima where the amount of fireworks can truly be overwhelming. The noise begins to die down at around 1AM so try to be active and enjoy Peru as us locals would with good food, Christmas music, your loved ones and some hot chocolate and Panettone.

Here at Karikuy Tours we know it can be daunting planning a trip to a foreign country especially during the holidays when there is so much going on. The Holidays in Peru can see an increase in travel prices and limited availability for flights, hotels and even some tours. Surely you don’t need this added stress in your life. Let us take care of all the planning and create an itinerary to suit you or your families sense of adventure and curiosity. To plan a vacation to Peru for the Holidays or more information on travel contact us at booking@karikuy.com or Visit our website and our current Holiday Tour Package.

How to get to Cerro San Cristobal

As far as I knew, there were no roller coasters here in Lima; no perks for adrenaline-junkies apart from perhaps paragliding off the cliffs in Miraflores. Well, I exaggerate slightly due to being such a scaredy-cat, but if you’re looking for a hair-raising thrill might I suggest taking the open top bus up to the peak of Cerro San Cristobal. At 400 meters above sea level, it may not compete with the heights of Machu Picchu, but it certainly offers a fantastic panoramic view of Lima…if you can make it to the top.

Views from Cerro San Cristobal

Luckily there’s no need to hike like Wayna Picchu, you can hop on one of the many (and I really mean many) tourist buses for a small fee. The bus will chuff its way up the winding streets through the Rimac neighborhood eventually wheezing its way to the very top of Cerro San Cristobal. Don’t be fooled by the sprightly grandmas strolling up the hill with their shopping bags, it’s a rather steep climb in places.

Incidentally, the Rimac neighborhood is named after the river that flows through the city…but does it sound familiar to you? Perhaps because the word Rimac is where the name Lima comes from. Apparently, the Spanish weren’t able to pronounce the native name  (or were just being lazy) so named the city Lima. Its an interesting thought to consider as the bus takes you through the neighborhood, but what awaits you at the top?

The Best Views of Lima are from Cerro San Cristobal

Without a doubt, an absolutely stunning view of Lima. You can see virtually every neighborhood, all the way to Miraflores and the ocean. It’s also interesting to notice how the houses have been placed up the hillsides of the various mounds around the city. Once this land was unoccupied, but as more and more immigrants came to Lima from the provinces, looking to seek their fortunes, they needed somewhere to live.

There was a law that if you inhabited a piece of land for over 5 years, then you would become the legal owner. And so naturally, many Peruvian migrants started building on the bits of land that no one else wanted, up the sides of the hills, in the hope that they would be able to hold on to them for the required time. Most of them did, resulting in numerous ‘barrios jovenes’ (young neighborhoods) that were comprised of Lima’s original migrants.

Yours truly, braving the heights.

If you look to the other side, prosperous San Isidro and Miraflores come into view, with their beautiful coastline and wealth of shopping malls and quality restaurants. I’ve mentioned before how Lima is like a microcosm of Peru, and the view from Cerro San Cristobal is a great example of this. If you look to one side you can see migrants from the mountains making their new homes up the sides of Lima’s mini mountains. To the other side, the cosmopolitan and wealthy city residents enjoying life by the sea. It’s a fascinating view of a complex city, and a great photo opportunity.

That said, the bus navigates some sharp turnings with steep drops on either side, so if you are afraid of heights as I am, I strongly recommend you do your pisco tasting before boarding a bus to Cerro San Cristobal in order to gain your courage for the ride! If not, both arms in the air and try not to scream!

Beckie is a volunteer with the Karikuy Volunteer Program in Lima, Peru.

Chocolate Beer

Peru is the Gastronomic Capital of the World, Surely they Must have Chocolate Liquor.

For many people, when they’re having a bit of a stressful day, what do they reach for as a comfort?  For some, it’s sweet treats like chocolate. For others, it might be a glass of wine or pisco (if you’re in Peru). But did you know that both these popular things, chocolate and alcohol, actually come from the same Cacao fruit?

If you crack open the Cacao fruit, inside you’ll find a white, spongy pulp with the cocoa beans inside. If you’ve seen the chirimoya fruit on your travels, it looks a lot like this.

The cacao bean itself it bitter, but the spongy pulp is all sugar (looks like it was always chocolate’s destiny to be sweet!). But what happens if you leave the sugary pulp alone…it ferments into alcohol.

No Chocolate Liquor in Lima?

As I learnt at Chocomuseo, the cacao farmers in the Peruvian Amazon have developed the technique to take this fermented cacao pulp and process it into an alcoholic spirit. But, here’s the tease- they won’t ship it to Lima!

As I myself will not be visiting the Amazon on this trip, I pass on the investigative baton to any traveler in Peru who will be taking a trip to an area near cacao plantations. Chocolate Liquor? Let’s track some down! Until that time, we might all have to be content with some chocolaty pisco which you can purchase at one of the Choco Museo stores across Lima. Pop in for a free sample, they have sites in Miraflores, Barranco, and Plaza de Armas. But be careful, tasty treats like this are hard to put down!

Beckie is a volunteer with the Karikuy Volunteer Program in Lima, Peru.

When in Peru, drink as the Peruvians? Absolutely. But no, I’m not talking about Pisco this time, but Peru’s very own, home-grown, range of cervezas. That’s Peruvian beers, to you and me.

The most popular of Peruvian beers on offer are Cuzqueña, Pilsen Callao, and Cristal. These are the beers that you will find in any little shop or bar, and probably what you will find in the hand of a local come a weekend night.

Peruvian Beers
Peruvian beers on offer

But, which is better? To find out, I sacrificed myself for the sake of this blog, and did a taste test. A blind taste test at that, just to be fair.

Cuzqueña is the ultimate winner of the three in taste, both in ‘blonde’ (pale) and ‘negro’ (dark) variations (yes, I tried them both). This is probably Peru’s signature beer, and the bottles themselves are reason enough to  make a purchase (you might recognize that famous 12 sided-brick Inca Wall in Cuzco city adorning the bottom). It’s also reflected in the price, although they still certainly make a good souvenir and/or gift (and/or personal supply).

The next option is Pilsen Callao. It’s also the middle of the price variations, and the Peruvians have kept faithful to their price=quality assessment when it comes to beer, in my opinion. Finally, for the price of the others, you can have yourself a satisfying 1 litre bottle of Cristal to enjoy. Considering this is the lower-priced option, I think it certainly tops special brew (if you know, you know). It’s not complete filth and I would even venture to say that it is still nice enough to warrant ordering at a bar.

Just… a wall of beer

So, my final recommendations on Peruvian beers?

Actually, I would recommend Cristal. The bottle is bigger, which means you can share it around more easily with the other members of your party (you didn’t think I did those taste-tests all by  myself, did you?). And after all, sharing alcohol is the spirit of drinking Peruvian beers here in Peru, and what you will compromise on taste you will make up for in friendships. Cuzqueña is by far the best taste, but maybe keep this as a nice gift for your friends back home.

PromPeru travels to Peru Nebraska with Peruvian Celebrities to show it’s citizens the meaning behind being Peruvian.

English Subtitles provided by Karikuy Tours, come explore Peru, Land of the Incas.

On the eve of Peruvian Independence, we remember the documentary “Peru Nebraska”, by the Peru Brand, which was released just over 10 years ago. Under a different context today, the audiovisual piece continues to excite thousands of Peruvians around the world.

In 2011, the Peru Brand found a way to take Peru further. This is how “Peru Nebraska” was born, a documentary filmed in a town that was named after our country in Nebraska, United States. The initiative was for US citizens to feel as Peruvian as we do.

In this way, Carlos Alcántara, Magaly Solier, Dina Paucar and more Peruvian personalities prepared their suitcases to travel to the small town “Peru”, in the US Upon arrival, they offered knowledge of Peru and the customs that characterize us, from the meals even the music.

Peru Nebraska

The North Americans dared to try the typical dishes of our country, they danced to the music and surfed the waves (although very different from those of the national beaches). The documentary “Peru Nebraska” caused a growth in the feeling of Peruvians, moving many Peruvians to tears.

A Look back at Peru Nebraska during the Pandemic

In times of pandemic, without the possibility of a regular celebration of the National Holidays, many Peruvians take refuge in this good memory of the Peruvian ambassadors who brought national wealth to a place that had fallen in the forgotten years of United States history. . After that experience, the villagers of Peru, in Nebraska, felt as Peruvian as we do.

With more than 2 million views on YouTube, the 15-minute documentary by Marca Perú continues to be present to this day despite the fact that almost a decade has passed since its premiere.

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