Lima, the capital of Peru, is a vibrant metropolis located along the Pacific coast. One of South America’s largest cities, Lima is known for its historical sites, Spanish architecture, beautiful parks, endless beaches and interesting museums.
The best way to explore the city is by going on a walking tour or getting on a Mirabus. The city also offers an exciting gastronomic experience, so don’t shy away from indulging in its delicious cuisine, especially the signature ceviche!
Lima’s historic centre includes the 140-sq-meter Plaza Mayor (also called Plaza de Armas), Plaza San Martin, Presidential Palace, Archbishop’s Palace and the main square. This UNESCO listed centre is surrounded by charming Spanish era buildings with baroque architecture and impressive mansions. On the east side of the Plaza Mayor stands Lima’s 16th-century cathedral, which was built to resemble the cathedral in Seville, Spain.
The Spanish baroque styled San Francisco church and monastery are part of Lima’s historic centre and are best known for their underground catacombs. These catacombs are the final resting place of thousands of Lima’s elite and you can still see their bones lined along the passageways. Apart from the catacombs, the monastery is known for its impressive religious art and library with its large collection of antique books.
Peru’s capital has a long list of museums that contain fascinating exhibits displaying the historical and cultural wealth of the country. Museo de la Nacion (National Museum) is Lima’s largest museum and it narrates Peruvian archaeological history right from the time of its first inhabitants to the Inca empire, Spanish era and present day. The Rafael Larco Herrera Museum (commonly Larco Museum) houses an extensive collection of ceramics belonging to different cultures including the Cupisnique, Chimú, Chancay, Nazca and Inca. Apart from ceramics, gold work, jewellery, stone carvings and textiles are on display.
The Archaeology, Anthropology, and History Museum explores the chronological history of Peru and has numerous wrapped mummies, burial tombs, ceramics, metal work and jewellery on display. Museo de Arte de Lima with its displays of art ranging from pre-Columbian to present day and the Fundación Museo Amano with its collection of Chimú and Nazca ceramics, are other popular museums.
Miraflores, home to the New Peruvian cuisine, is an upscale neighbourhood located just south of downtown Lima. It is packed with posh restaurants, bars, clubs, hotels and boutiques. Its beaches, Makaha beach and Waikiki beach offer excellent conditions for surfing and the cliffs above the waters are best for paragliding and hand gliding.
Bang in the middle of contemporary glass and steel buildings in Miraflores, you will find the Huaca Pucllana, a pyramid-shaped temple built of clay bricks. This pre-Inca structure is believed to have been an important ceremonial and administrative centre.
Barranco is a bohemian and romantic district, located south of Miraflores. Lined by aesthetic 19th and 20th-century buildings, it is a popular hub for writers, artists and musicians. During the day, the neighbourhood has a calm atmosphere, when you can enjoy peaceful strolls through its gardens and seaside; by night it turns into a party district with its themed bars and restaurants.
Rich in historical and cultural heritage, Peru’s national capital is an exciting combination of the old and the new. It serves as an excellent starting point for any visitor to Peru and it introduces them to all the rich destinations it has to offer.
Follow our blog for your daily dose of travel inspiration, information and tips. We try to publish atleast one article each day. Check this space for all the latest posts.