Arequipa has a pretty hopping nightlife in the old quarter, with plenty of bars, restaurants, and discos catering to both gringos and locals. On a busy night, Arequipa does its best impression of the Cusco bar scene, and the alleyway just behind the Cathedral (Pasaje de la Catedral) is Arequipa's version of Cusco's "gringo alley," though more respectable. Just as in Cusco many bars are housed in impressive colonial digs, in Arequipa you're likely to do your drinking in a bar with vaulted sillar ceilings. Sunday through Wednesday is usually pretty quiet, with things heating up beginning on Thursday night. Virtually every bar in town advertises elastic happy hours, with basic cocktails going for as little as three for S/12. Calles San Francisco and Zela are the main hot spots, while there are also a number of bars along Santa Catalina.
Las Quenas, Santa Catalina 302 (tel. 054/281-115), is a peña bar and restaurant featuring live Andean music Monday through Saturday from 9pm to midnight, and special dance performances on Friday and Saturday nights. It's a cozy little place that serves pretty good Peruvian dishes. You can also catch peña music most evenings at El Tuturutu, Portal San Agustín 105 (tel. 054/201-842), a restaurant on the main square, and Afro-Peruvian and folkloric music at La Troica, Jerusalén 522 (tel. 054/225-690), a tourist-oriented restaurant in an old house.
As for pubs and bars, Siwara, Santa Catalina 210 (tel. 054/626-218) is a great-looking beer tavern that spills into two patios in the building of the Santuarios Andinos museum, across from the Santa Catalina monastery. Farrens Irish Pub, Pasaje Catedral 107 (tel. 054/238-465), very popular with visiting gringos, is a cool two-level joint with good drink specials and a rock and pop soundtrack. A cozy little watering hole with good drink specials is Brujas, San Francisco 300 (no phone). Another good spot for a drink is Montreál Le Café Art, Ugarte 210 (tel. 054/931-2796), which features an eclectic variety of live music Wednesday through Saturday and has happy hours between 5 and 11pm. La Casa de Klaus, Zela 207 (tel. 054/203-711), is a simple and brightly lit tavern popular with German, British, and local beer drinkers.
For a little more action, check out Forum Rock Café, San Francisco 317 (tel. 054/202-697), a huge place that is equal parts restaurant, bar, disco, and concert hall. It sports a rainforest theme, with jungle vegetation and "canopy walkways" everywhere. Live bands (usually rock) take the stage Thursday through Saturday. The upstairs grill has great panoramic views of the city. Just down the street, Déjà Vu, San Francisco 319 (tel. 054/221-904), has a good bar with a mix of locals and gringos, a lively dance floor, and English-language movies on a big screen every night at 8pm. It also has a spectacular rooftop terrace, which is a good spot for dinner or even breakfast after a long night partying. Kibosh, Zela 205 (tel. 054/626-218), is a chic, upscale pub with four bars, wood-oven pizza, a dance floor, and live music Wednesday through Saturday (ranging from Latin to hard rock).
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.