LIMA, Peru -- Teenagers throughout Latin America have long looked north for pop music inspiration. Now the East is rising, with a large and enthusiastic cult of fans in some countries following the K-pop music from Korea.

It's a movement especially strong in Peru and Chile, and it goes far beyond Psy and "Gangnam Style."

Some 13,000 fans attended an April concert in Lima by the group Super Junior. Another group, Big Bang, drew 14,000 in November. They've drawn similar crowds in neighboring Chile.

Hundreds of fans such as Araceli Galan gather each week in a downtown park in Lima to dance to the energetic music. Some dress up as Korean comic book characters.

"I've liked K-pop since I was 10," said Galan, now a 16-year-old student at a local university. "I learned everything from the Internet because here in Peru you don't find much on radio or television."

She's amassed a collection of posters, bracelets, T-shirts and records of her favorite, Kim Hyun Joong, who was met by thousands of fans when he arrived at the airport in Peru's capital in February.

"Although you won't believe it, in Peru the K-pop groups are starting to be more popular than Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga or Demi Lovato," said Diana Rodriguez, who is capitalizing on the trend by organizing Korean dance contests throughout Peru.

While there's little hard data on that, there's no questioning the fervor of the fans who turn up at Ramon Castilla Park each Saturday and emulate the dances of K-pop bands.

"We start at 10 in the morning and we stay until 6 in the afternoon," Galan said.

A bus trip away is the small Arenales shopping center where entire floors are dedicated to South Korean music, clothes and food.

"I like the `sujebi' soup and another dish that combines a sweet and salty flavor that I can't remember the name of," Galan said.

Some try to solve the language problem by having the songs translated into Spanish and posting them on the Internet. "The lyrics are pretty. It's not as eroticized as reggaeton. It's more romantic," said Pamela Diaz, a 26-year-old fan.

"It's made me want to learn Korean," said her 14-year-old sister, Sabrina.

The trend has surprised Peruvian parents, just as the onslaught of rock-and-roll once alarmed an earlier generation.

"My father listens to rock in English; he doesn't like K-pop at all," Galan said. "He tells me, `Why do you listen to that music if you don't know Korean?' And I tell him that he doesn't know how to speak English either. Music you only need to feel."

Loading Slideshow...
  • In this May 25, 2013 photo, Silvia, who did not give her last name, holds a fan as she poses for a photo at a party held at a school that was rented for the occasion in Lima, Peru. Silvia and her friends are all dressed in costumes in the style of characters from Korean comic books. Teenagers throughout Latin America have long looked north for pop music inspiration. Now the East is rising, with a large and enthusiastic cult of fans in some countries following the K-pop music from Korea. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 18, 2013 photo, fans of South Korea singer Heo Young Saeng watch his video play in a small video viewing area inside a shopping mall in Lima, Peru. Teenagers throughout Latin America have long looked north for pop music inspiration. Now the East is rising, with a large and enthusiastic cult of fans in some countries following the K-pop music from Korea. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 11, 2013 photo, a poster of South Korean K-pop singer Woorissica stands against a tree trunk after it was left behind by fans who gathered here in Ramon Castilla park in Lima, Peru. Teenagers throughout Latin America have long looked north for pop music inspiration. Now the East is rising, with a large and enthusiastic cult of fans in some countries following the K-pop music from Korea. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 25, 2013 photo, Gino, who did not give his last name, wears a costume that mimics the character "Pain" from a Japanese comic, during a K-pop music party held at a school that was rented for the occasion in Lima, Peru. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 18, 2013 photo, fans of South Korean K-pop singer Heo Young Saeng watch his video play in a viewing area inside a shopping mall in Lima, Peru. “Although you won't believe it, in Peru the K-pop groups are starting to be more popular than Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga or Demi Lovato,” said Diana Rodriguez, who is capitalizing on the trend by organizing Korean dance contests throughout Peru. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 25, 2013 photo, Isabel, who did not give her last name, dressed in the style of characters from Korean comic books, poses for a photo during a K-pop music party held at a school that was rented for the occasion in Lima, Peru. K-pop is a movement, especially strong in Peru and Chile, that goes far beyond Psy and “Gangnam Style.” (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 25, 2013 photo, followers of K-pop music look at souvenirs of singers inside a store at the Arenales shopping center in Lima, Peru. The Arenales shopping center has entire floors dedicated to South Korean music, clothes and food. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 4, 2013 photo, parents and their children wait for a store to open that sells Korean pop music, known as K-Pop, at the Arenales shopping center in Lima, Peru. Arenales has entire floors dedicated to South Korean music, clothes and food. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 4, 2013 photo, Sandra and Gabriel, who did not give their last names, pose for a photo in their costumes in the style of characters from South Korean comic books at the Arenales shopping center in Lima, Peru. The Arenales shopping center has entire floors dedicated to South Korean music, clothes and food. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 4, 2013 photo, a waitress dressed in the style of characters from Korean comic books works inside a restaurant at the Arenales shopping center in Lima, Peru. The Arenales shopping center has entire floors dedicated to South Korean music, clothes and food. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 11, 2013 photo, a fan of South Korean singer Hyun Joong shows her picture of him as she sits with other fans as they celebrate the singer's birthday in Ramon Castilla park in Lima, Peru. Hundreds of fans of K-pop gather each week in the downtown park to dance to the energetic music. Some dress up as Korean comic book characters. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 25, 2013 photo, figures of South Korean comic book characters stand for sale at the Arenales shopping center in Lima, Peru. The Arenales shopping center has entire floors dedicated to South Korean music, clothes and food. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 18, 2013 photo, members of a K-pop fan club for South Korean singer Kim Hyun Joong, sell souvenirs at a gathering of her fans at Ramon Castilla park in Lima, Peru. Joong was met by thousands of fans when he arrived at the airport in Peru's capital in February this year. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 18, 2013 photo, a member of a fan club for South Korean singer Kim Kyun Jong shows his photographs of the singer as his friends dance in the background in Ramon Castilla park where fans gather in Lima, Peru. Joong was met by thousands of fans when he arrived at the airport in Peru's capital in February this year. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

  • In this May 11, 2013 photo, followers of Korean pop band Big Bang, imitate the band at the Ramon Castilla Park in Lima, Peru. While there's little hard data, there's no questioning the fervor of the fans who turn up at Ramon Castilla Park each Saturday and emulate the dances of K-pop bands. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)