Lima Mini Guide
Lima in a Nutshell
Lima is the capital of Peru
. It is located in the centre of the country on a desert coast next to the Pacific Ocean.
How Can I get There?
Jorge Chavez International Airport has flights to cities worldwide and from there you can take a shuttle bus to the city. The journey time takes between 20 and 40 minutes and some hotels offer their own shuttle service, so it is worth checking if you are staying at a hotel in the city. Buses arrive there from national and international destinations and the city is easily accessible by the Pan American Highways, that go north and south of Lima. Within the city you can use the metro or there are bus and mini bus services available.
What can I see in the City?
Start at the historic centre of Lima, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Lucid Lima offers 2 hour walking tours around this area. You will see the Monastery of San Francisco and the Cathedral of Lima – these are both decorated inside with sevillian tiles and wooden sculptures and have catacombs below them. The Cathedral was built in 1535 and has a colonial appearance.
Close by you will find the Torre Tagle Palace, it is a Spanish baroque palace with an imposing façade and is now used as a government building. To discover more about Lima, visit the Museum of the Nation and see artefacts from ancient times to the present.
I Need Some Quiet…
Visit the Park of the Reserve and see the largest fountain complex in the world, known as the ‘magical circuit of water’. Head for the beach at Punta Hermosa and San Bartolo, just to name two. There are a number of beach resorts to the north and the south of the city and you will find restaurants and nightlife there too.
What’s the Food Like?
There are many influences in Limean food, partly due to the immigrant population. Peruvian food is often though of as quite heavy and spicy, but in Lima it tends to be lighter and seafood is used a lot due to the coastal location. One of the most popular dishes is ‘ceviche’ – raw seafood or fish marinated in lemon or lime juice and spices. This should be accompanied of course by the national drink of Pisco Sour, a brandy made from grapes. There are Asian and Middle Eastern restaurants in the city as well as fast food outlets, if you want to eat something more familiar.
Try the Casa Andria Private Collection at Miraflores, it is a boutique hotel in an upmarket area. The hotel is modern, but is decorated with Peruvian art works and colonial antiques and there is free Wi-Fi. There is a fitness centre and a heated pool with a waterfall if you wish to use them and a sauna and massage facilities. The hotel has a gift shop and Sama Café for a quick snack. The restaurant has a special chef designed menu featuring regional gourmet dishes.
Out and About
Take a bus trip out to Nazca and see the ancient and mysterious Nazca Lines or see the centre of Inca civilization of Cuzco
. Alternatively, take a scenic train ride through the Andes to Huancayo.
With over 300 years of Spanish colonial history, the city is full of important churches and monasteries. The main part of the city for this is the Centro Historico which also has most of the old colonial buildings still standing.
For the modern face of Lima, take a hire car to Miraflores where modern shopping, bars and nightclubs can be found. More Bohemian, but with its fair share of culture and nightlife, is Barranco. Lima is renowned for its Peruvian speciality food based on the particularly tasty seafood caught in the waters of the coast.