The Spanish colonized Peru in the 15th century. Peru remained loyal to the Spanish crown despite the wars being fought across Latin America in the 19th century for independence. Eventually, Argentina and Chile signed a treaty to peruse the “liberation” of Peru. And upon entering Lima, Jose San Martin, the Argentinian commander declared the independence of Peru on July 28, 1821.
During the whole month of July, the national flag is proudly displayed on homes, schools, office buildings, public and private institutions, office buildings, and restaurants. In fact, the use of the national flag during this time is mandatory according to Law 15253; people who do not comply are fined.
July 28th: The Message of the Nation
While the official holiday is on July 28th, celebrations begin on the evening of the 27th with folk music playing all across the parks and plazas in Peru. At dawn on the 28th, a 21-cannon salute kicks of the flag raising ceremony in the capital, Lima.
The archbishop of Lima leads a mass that typically begins at 8 am; it is a hymn of thanksgiving to God. The President along with other prominent public figures attend the ceremony together. Afterward, the President of Peru addresses the nation by giving an account of the country’s progress.
The Message of the Nation for National Holidays is a tradition that dates back to the first Independence Day. The President talks about the current state of the nation with a speech about the country's social, cultural, economic, and other achievements. The message is meant to be inspirational and fill the people of Peru with optimism and sense of peace that their beloved country is headed in the right direction.
July 29th: The Great Military Parade
On the 2nd day of Peru’s 2-day National Holidays, a grand procession takes place in the decorated main streets. Representatives of the Peruvian Armed Forces and National Police participate in a grand military parade. The parades were initially held in Lima Plaza de Armas and later moved to the Campo de Marte. They would move again to Lima’s Avenida Brasil in the 60’s. By the 80’s, they took place at Admiral Grau Plaza. It has moved many more times since then.
The Great Military Parade begins with the raising of the flag and the national anthem. After the ceremony, the General of Division EP Commander of the Military Garrison of Lima and Head of Line approaches the President to request his authorization to begin the parade. Once the President grants permission, the parade starts.
Paso Horse show at "Los Ficus"
In other parts of the country, particularly the rural areas, the National Holidays are celebrated with cockfights, bullfights, and rodeo-style Paso Horse shows. But no matter where you are in Peru during the celebration of Peru’s independence, be assured that it will be with festivities, music, fireworks, food, and fun.
If you are planning a trip to Peru, and you wantto enjoy celebreations, July will be the best time to come and activities take place along the country.