My 10 year old daughter and I did a cooking class with the amazing restaurant, Zingaro, and we got to try our hand at making Causita de Pollo and Lomo Saltado. I also had the pleasure of trying my hand at making a Pisco Sour - a definite favourite of mine. We definitely enjoyed the experience and of course were able to sit down and relish in our work once the meal was cooked. There are a few cooking opportunities available around town but we especially liked this one as Zingaro is a quality restaurant and we enjoyed the "behind the scenes" experience it gave us. This experience was actually part of a half day tour with Peru Inside Out which also takes in the local market and the volcanic rock quarry.
Mundo Alpaca is a great place to wander around with kids - they have llamas and alpacas there to see, an informative area to view the wool and the dying and weaving process as well as a museum of wool processing machinery all set in a lovely garden complete with art gallery and cafe.
Located in Parque Lambramani, four floors down, we discovered this pirate glow in the dark minigolf course. Featuring 18 holes, the kids had fun trying to putt the balls and sink a hole in one. A fun way to spend an hour, the course costs 12 soles per person.
As the weather in Arequipa is so agreeable, it makes sense that you would want to spend much of your time oors. Parque Los Ccoritos is a great little park for dinosaurs lovers featuring dinosaurs, swings, slides and much more to keep the kids amused. We went on a week day and it was extremely quiet, although saying that, not everything was open. We were told however it got very busy on the weekends so pick your days wisely.
Selva Alegre Park is a lovely park in walking distance from Plaza de Armas. You can choose to take a picnic and just hang out in the grounds, purchase some Queso Helado at the gates and enjoy it on a park bench, play on the climbing equipment or rent a boat and paddle around the lake. Quite often on weekends, there are food fairs or markets there providing an opportunity to sample the local food and other delicacies.
You can't miss the Arequipa city bus tours - there seem to be many companies offering the same tourist route but admittedly it is a lot of fun for the whole family. The tour takes four hours and for 25 soles this is a real bargain, however if you enter the Fundador Mansion and Sabandia Mill, you will be expected to pay the entrance fee for those on top of the tour. Starting at the main square, the tour will take you from the historic district to Yanahuara, Cayma, Sachacha and beyond giving you a good feel for the city of Arequipa.
While the city bus tour does take you to Sabandia Mill, it is also possible to see it on your own and spend an extended visit there. Sabandia Mill was Arequipa's first stone mill built in 1785 and restored in 1973, after which it was subsequently opened to the public. You can picnic in the grounds, go horse riding, see the animals in the petting zoo or just relax while enjoying the views of El Misti in the background.
Chaqchao Chocolate Factory offers chocolate workshops to kids aged 7 and up, who are accompanied by their parents. The smell of their chocolate kitchen is enough to tempt anyone and their store offers a fun range of chocolate goodies to purchase. Even visiting their store or enjoying a hot chocolate in their upstairs cafe, is a fun way to spend an hour or two if you choose not to partake in their classes.
Whether you choose to go during the day or in the evening, Santa Catalina is an enjoyable destination for the whole family. While not seemingly kid friendly at first glance, kids will enjoy wandering around this picturesque mini-city and learning about the history of this fascinating place.
We always try to source out a swimming pool wherever we go and the kids definitely favoured the one at Tingo. It had a lovely pool for kids complete with water slides of all sizes and was cheap to enter. Admittedly it was out of town a bit, but definitely worth the visit in our opinion. The only issue we had was the pool was not heated but they had fun nonetheless. Note that swimming caps are necessary in order to enter the water, generally a non-issue as you can purchase them there on the premises.
Mono Blanco Aventura is the name of a centre on La Marina filled with a myriad of climbing walls for kids of all ages (and adults as well). There is a section where the kids can just free climb "for fun" or there is the harder wall where the kids need to be harnessed with a helmet. Definite fun for all ages and good value as well. We visited on a Monday when the centre opened at 4pm so it is definitely worth contacting them ahead of time to check their schedule.