Objective: To determine the prevalence and factors associated with depressive episode in adolescents from Lima Metropolitana and Callao. Methods: Cross sectional study with three-stage cluster probability sampling. We used the database from the Metropolitan Epidemiological Study on Mental Health 2002. Study population comprised residents of 12-17 years. Questionnaires were used to measure demographic and socioeconomic variables, general mental health, mental disorders and domestic relationships. We adjusted multiple logistic regression models. Results: Prevalence of depressive episode in adolescents was 8.6% (CI 95%: 6.7-11.1%), we observed, by multivariate analysis, statistically significant associations with age of 15-17 years (OR: 2.028; CI 95%: 1.084-3.984), female gender (OR: 2.24; CI 95% 1.164-4.292), nothing or little satisfaction with social relationships (OR: 2.691; CI 95%: 1.326-5.460), unjust rules and punishment at home (OR: 4.215; CI 95%: 2.151-8.26), eating disorders (OR: 3.0; CI 95%: 1.394-6.454) and death wishes (OR:2.88; CI 95%: 1.505-5.511). Conclusions: Prevalence of depressive episode in adolescents in Lima and Callao was similar and in some cases greater than prevalence reported in adolescents in other countries. Associated factors that best predicted depressive episode were age 15 to 17 years, female gender, nothing or little satisfaction with social relationships, unjust rules and punishment at home, eating disorders and wishes to die, which could be evaluated as risk factors in future studies.