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As a person with a slightly unhealthy cat obsession I was beyond delighted to realize the Parque Kennedy in Lima existed only a few blocks away from my hotel. A park full of cuddly cats feels sounds like a dream and was one of the more laid-back attractions I visited in Peru as part of my 11 months in South & Central America.
Parque Kennedy / Kennedy Park in Lima
Parque Kennedy is located in the center of the trendy Miraflores district that runs along the coast in the sprawling city of Lima. The moderately sized park is located in the middle of four roads (which doesn’t seem that safe for the cats right?) in the center of Miraflores and is home to at least twenty cats at any one time.
This may sound like a nightmare for anyone who hates cats (and if you do we can’t be friends), but the cats are calm, if not a bit shy and are commonly found snoozing in the laps of one of the parks many visitors.
I recommend staying in Miraflores in Lima, not only so you’re close to this park, but also as it’s a pretty area near the beach. See the latest accommodation prices here.
It seems like food is put out each morning for the cats by the council, and the cats tend to spend the rest of the day settling their stomachs in the sun amongst the Peruvian locals and the tourists who visit the park.
I saw many a person eating their lunch among the animals without fear of their meals being stolen (what madness) as well as many people sitting in the grass with cats fast asleep in their laps.I realize I can only paint so much of a picture of the park with words so we’ll let our camera do the rest of the talking.
How to Find Parque Kennedy in Lima
Trying to give directions in any Latin America country is a little difficult, especially if I have only visited as tourists but I’ll give it a try.
Firstly, get yourself a taxi or local bus to the Miraflores suburb in Lima – google says the street name is Av Mariscal Oscar Benavides. If you are catching a taxi it may be easier to ask to be dropped off straight at the park so you can say “Parque Kennedy Por Favor” – meaning Park Kennedy please. Buses are a little more complicated to use if you don’t speak spanish but I have seen many go past it (although I couldn’t tell you which ones).
Next, find the Pariwana Backpacker Hostel (if you are having trouble finding the park itself) as this is on the same street and in very close proximity to the park. It will take you one or two blocks to walk from here.
Look around for a park near the hostel, it should be the closest one and it’s in the middle of the roads so it’s a little hard to miss. If you really can’t find it you can ask a passerby “Conoces donde parque Kennedy es?” (Do you know where Park Kennedy is?), but it really is rather close to the hostel so you should be able to find it on your own.
Bonus Content: Five Ways to Make A Cat Sit on you in Parque Kennedy
This is my short guide for those of you who stuck around to read the end of the post (gee, thanks): Here’s five ways to make a cat sit on you in Lima’s Cat Park.
1. Cover yourself in cat food. I’m no scientist but I know that cats like cat food – hence why you should cover yourself in cat food and they will come. FACT.
2. Pretend to be a cat. In the walking dead Carol has on numerous occasions covered herself in zombie blood and hobbles around in an attempt to be mistaken as a zombie by other zombies. This method has been rather effective for her and she keeps going back for more each season or so. Who’s to say covering yourself in cat fur and meowing won’t have a similar effect and trick the cats to accept you as one of their own?
3. Be stealthy. If you sit in the same place for long enough you’re bound to have a ball of fluff cross your path at one point in time, it’s really just a numbers game.
4. Steal one from a nearby child. They’ll probably piss it off eventually anyway, your just speeding up the process.
5. Of course if none of these other suggestions work for you I suppose you could just walk over to one, pick it up and plop it into your lap.