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Economy Travel

Lima, Peru—Magic Water Circuit

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As my open-air double-decker tour bus turned the corner our guide pointed out Circuito Mágico del Agua, the Magic Water Circuit in Lima’s Parque de la Reserva. Named the largest fountain complex in the world by the Guinness Book of World Records, the water park features 13 fountains, including one that shoots more than 260 feet into the air. I’d only caught a glimpse of the park’s water features, but I’d seen enough to know I wanted a closer look. A week later, back in Lima after a visit to Cuzco and Machu Picchu, I partnered up with my girlfriend Karina, who lives in Lima, and we headed for a night of frolicking in the fountains. From the Magic Fountain, we made our way past the Fountain of Life and the Fountain of Traditions, pausing to admire the unique design of each before ducking through the long Tunnel of Surprises, made up of cardinal red water arches. On the other side we paused for nearly half an hour at the Labyrinth of Daydreams, a circular fountain with alternating wet and dry concentric circles. The challenge was to make it to the center without getting wet, but since there was no way to know when thewater spouts in the “wet” circles would go off, everyone got soaked. All the fountains were spectacular, but the best of show was the Fuente de la Fantasía – Fantasy Fountain – onto which a laser light show is projected three times each evening. Ballroom dancers, geometric shapes, and exploding fireworks materialized on the dancing waters, which were in turn syncopated to music.

The park is open every Wednesday through Sunday and on holidays from 3 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. and the laser light shows are at 7:15, 8:15, and 9:30 p.m. each night. Enjoy an afternoon picnic lunch on the lawn, romp in the interactive fountains in your swimsuit, and stay around for the illuminated displays after dark, all for only $1.50 per person (4 Peruvian Soles). It’s the best bargain in town.

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