Peru has lots to offer to its visitors: an amazing history with many archaeological sites spread around the country, an incredible nature incl. dessert on the coast, tropical beaches in the north, the Andean highlands and the Amazon jungle and a highly praised cuisine. If you are looking for even more and love to try your luck during your visit, no problem. Gambling in Peru is legal, so are online casinos, lottery gaming and pari-mutuel wagering. And while Peru and Lima in particular surely aren't Las Vegas, the gambling and gaming scene is booming.
Not every Casino in Peru is a "Real" Casino
Very popular in Peru are slot parlors. Although their name often suggests these gaming houses are casinos, they are actually so called tragemonedas, which only offer slot and video gaming machines and such the like. We can find them in all bigger and even smaller cities in the country, nearly around every corner. For the "real" casino experience, come to Lima and here best to the Miraflores district. And be assured, you won't be disappointed. The few licensed casinos offer next to the lasted slots as well all you expect from a traditional casino incl. Roulette (traditional and electronic), Poker (mostly Texas Holdem), Black Jack, Baccarat and Craps. They are high-quality establishments and run absolutely professional. So, no need to worry about being snookered.
Casinos are open 24/7, but by Peruvian law gaming tables are only allowed to operate between 06.00 pm to 06.00am. The proper action doesn't start before 09.00 pm. Dress code is smart / casual. They accept credit cards (don't forget your ID) at the cash desks and ATMs available. All casinos trade in Peruvian Soles and US Dollars. And although for entry you most probably won't need an ID, for cashing in larger wins you will. Most staff at Lima's casinos speak Spanish and English.
By courtesy casinos serve gamblers (at slots and tables) free drinks and snacks; if you play for a longer time, even a full meal. By law all casinos in Peru are nonsmoking, but still once in a while smoking especially in the private rooms is permitted. The minimum age for entering a casino in Peru is 18 years.
And just to mention it, even though Lima's casinos are in safe neighborhoods, take care when leaving late at night. Opportunity makes a thief. If you won a larger sum, best use the free taxi service the casino will offer.
Lima's casinos offer most nights Texas Holdem poker cash games and regular tournaments. By-ins vary depending casino and table and may start as low as US$20 (or the equivalent in Soles), but are commonly around US$50 to US$100 (or the equivalent in Soles). Most often 2/5 games are played, less frequently 5/5 or 10/20. Poker tournaments are scheduled regularly at all casinos. Best ask at the casino of your choice when the next ones are being held.
Before you enter the game, make sure you know the rules. Here and there you find some for non-locals unfamiliar or probably strange variations. Around the tables you have expats, business travelers, but also many skilled and good locals, so even as an experienced player take your time to settle in. Play is in Spanish, but you can ask questions to the dealer or declare in English as well.
In Peru you only have one horse racing track, the Hipodromo de Moneterrico / Jockey Club in Lima featuring races on dirt and grass. The track is open Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday in the afternoon. A modern race book with pari-mutuel wagering is on the premises.
The website of the Hipodromo de Monterrico offers detailed information on horses, jockeys and races. Here you find as well the possibility for online betting on upcoming horse races.