Best time to go to Peru

Guinea Pig Festival 2023

Do you love guinea pigs or 'cuy' in the same way as Peruvians do?

Dates: July 16, 2023

Guinea Pig Festival
Guinea Pig Festival

For more than 5,000 years, cute little guinea pigs have been the centre of many cultural activities and local cuisine for Peruvian communities and indigenous tribes.

Today this tiny animal has a special day on the list of national holidays in Peru. On the second Friday of October the country celebrates National Guinea Pig Day. Also, there are local festivals, which are even more important. Between the period of July and November, many villages and cities across the country commemorate guinea pigs. The most popular happen in Huancayo, Lima, Cusco, and Huacho. Each celebration includes a "beauty contest" where the most well dressed and the biggest rodents are chosen. Some even define mister and miss guinea pigs. The creativity of pet owners really has no limits. Tiny animals are dressed as miners, queens, dancers, and so on.

Usually, every celebration ends with a reception where the main ingredient of most of the dishes is cuy. Cuy is how guinea pigs are called in Peru. You may even see large plates that are decorated with fried rodents, who "stand" among vegetables and herbs. If you decide to try cuy, then go for the famous chactado, which is the flattened and split open fried animal.

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Last updated: by Eleonora Provozin