Shrouded in a dream-like mist for most of the year, Lima is rich in architecture, gastronomy and culture. Peru’s capital and largest city is characterised by a compelling mix of styles from the colonial structure of the Monastery of San Francisco through to Baroque churches and the more modern Magic Circuit of Water and contemporary districts. Lima is a bustling and rugged coastline city boasting modern restaurants, trendy bars, shops and galleries but it is veiled in the beautiful and profound history of the Inca Empire.
Explore the historic quarter and the Plaza Mayor which is home to the ornate Archbishop’s Palace and 16th-Century Baroque Cathedral. Trace the footsteps of the conquistadors at Casa de Aliaga, Lima’s oldest Colonial mansion, and discover pre-Columbian treasures at the National Museum and gold artefacts at the Gold Museum. The bohemian district of Barranco boasts a thriving artistic community and breathtaking clifftop views while the elegant district of Miraflores is home to some of the city’s finest restaurants and boutiques.
Peruvian cuisine is renowned throughout the world for its delicious fusion of traditional dishes with a contemporary twist and Lima is fast becoming a top culinary destination. Enjoy a host of gastronomical delights with a wonderful blend of influences from the Andes to Japan. Sample national favourites such as roasted guinea pig or ceviche – a delicious dish of raw fish, onions and chilli peppers marinated in lime juice, washed down with Peru’s national drink – the pisco sour cocktail – which was invented in the capital.
Serious shoppers should head to Jockey Plaza, a high-end mall boasting 230 shops including designer boutiques. Explore Miraflores’ markets and galleries in search of traditional handicrafts. Avenida La Paz offers clothes, jewellery and antique shops while the Central Market is great for souvenirs. Indulge in retail therapy whilst enjoying stunning ocean views at Larcomar, an open-air mall set on top of a reef on Miraflores’ seafront. Wander Barranco’s charming streets to discover a host of galleries and craft shops.