Perched high atop pristine cliffs overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Lima, Peru is one of the world’s most vibrant capital cities. No longer is this city simply a spot for connecting flights on the way to visit Machu Picchu. The city has one of the most thriving foodie arenas on the planet, with so many varied cuisines, you may just want to book an extra day or two to your stay simply to sample as much fare as possible.
Whether you’re a self-proclaimed nature enthusiast, an arts or cultural history buff, or even the proverbial “beach bum,” you will find your niche in Lima. You’ll have the opportunity to explore the pre-Columbian pyramids, while the area’s many colonial-style churches will also beg for your attention. Hotels and restaurants maintain rather reasonable pricing, regardless of season.
After a day of sightseeing and exploration, you may want to head to Barranco, an artsy, boho-type neighborhood in which the nightlife explodes. The avenues are lined with cocktail clubs and various venues for attending live music shows. During the day, Barranco’s galleries are buzzing with art collectors. If you hire a tour guide, you’ll be enriched by the stories and history of Peru as told by a native Peruvian.
Unlike many parts of the world, Lima sports just two seasons (winter and summer), and the temps don’t fluctuate all that much. Located in the southern hemisphere, Lima’s seasons are just the opposite of the U.S. Summertime is from December to April, with January being the warmest month. While the majority of the year Lima experiences pretty dense cloud cover, sunscreen is still a necessity.
Lima’s streets are very narrow, and consequently quite overcrowded. If you’re not an experienced driver in these sorts of situations, it is probably best to get around by foot or by taxi; however, Lima’s taxi services do not use meters, so haggle your price before you get into the car. There are also public buses (the Metropolitano and the Combis). The Metro costs a little bit more, but might be worth it as the Combis system is minibuses and, if you’re not experienced at jumping off buses that barely brake at unmarked stops, you’re better off with the Metro.
However you choose to get around Lima, your experience will be one of excitement and fond memories.