If you can, you should aim to be in Huánuco around August 15, when carnival week begins and the city’s normal tranquillity explodes into a wild fiesta binge. Peruvian Independence Day (July 28) is also a good time to be here, when traditional dances like the chunco take place throughout the streets. On January 1, 6 and 18, you can witness the Dance of the Blacks (El Baile de los Negritos) in which various local dance groups, dressed in colourful costumes with black masks (representing the slaves brought to work in the area’s mines) run and dance throughout the main streets of the city; food stalls stay open and drinking continues all day and most of the night.

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