The remarkable city of Lima was our first introduction into Peru. From here we traveled throughout the country into Nazca, Arequipa, Colca Canyon, Puno, Lake Titicaca, Cusco, and onto the grand prize of the trip, Machu Picchu. Lima was a brilliant way to get ourselves grounded into this country, as well as its climate. If you find yourself traveling to Peru, more than likely you will start off in Lima, just as we did.
Lima, the capital of Peru, is a vibrant urban sprawl and is the largest city in the country. It is also one of the largest cities in the Americas, with a population of more than 19 million throughout its metropolitan area. To say Lima is a big city, would be an understatement.
There is much to take in when visiting Lima and how you travel, how long you have, and what interests you will define your visit. If you like culture, art, history, gastronomy, archaeology, architecture, sports, and everything in between, there are a myriad of ways to explore Lima.
When we visited Peru, we skipped over the big bus tours, with the exception of small day tours, and wanderlusted through this country on our own. We took buses to other cities, had our hotels pick us up, wandered the cities by foot, and took small group tours to see places that were too far out. If we can do it, so can you!
With Lima, we took a two to three hour city tour to get a layout of the city, and to learn more of its history. If you are short on time, this is the best way to explore this mega city. We had a few days to get acclimated, so we found ourselves doing some neighborhood exploration on our own. I do plan on returning to Lima, and now that I have seen many of its historical landmarks, I can stay in a neighborhood or two that I like, and immerse myself more.
Lima is one richest cities when it comes to history in the Americas, and is home to one of the oldest intuitions of higher learning in the New World. The National University of San Marcos was founded in 1551, and is the oldest continuously functioning university in the Americas.
The historic center of Lima, its archaeological sites, museums, art galleries, and its food culture are some of Lima’s highlights with visitors. It is a hot destination for global travel, and is the top place for travel in South America, with about 2.63 million international visitors per year.
I had many favorite highlights while visiting Lima, including the glorious Historic Center, which was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988. Walking underground into one of the archaeological sites was a remarkable experience as well. Strolling the old streets full of old Spanish Colonial architecture was inspiring and magnificent to take in. Plus the pork sandwiches from La Lucha Sandwicheria, and shopping for beautiful leather bags at the Larcamor mall was fantastic.
If you looking to visit the metropolis of Lima, and not interesting in taking a big organized bus trip of Peru, then centrally locate yourself in a neighborhood that interests you. We stayed at the Marriott, which was located across from the Larcamor mall with views of the Pacific ocean. Wherever you choose, you can sign up with a day tour of the city to get a lay of the land, and see if you want to explore it more on your own.
🔎 Feel free to search “Peru” on my site to read more on my adventures of this extraordinary country.
However you decide to visit Lima, you will leave more enriched than when you arrived. Happy travels, my friends!
Love is the food for life, Travel is dessert…
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📸 All photos are taken by me and are my intellectual property – Trixie Navarre
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