Ultimate Travel Guide: Lima, Peru
Rich in history, world-renowned restaurants and its staggering population; Peru’s capital, Lima will tantalise travellers with its vast diversity.
Known as the City of Kings; sitting along the coast line amongst black sand beaches, the high-rises and mosaic-tiled public spaces, Lima elegantly combines pre-Incan to colonial history all in the one city. Charming travellers with the heavy South American influence, Lima flourishes in colour, culture and tradition.
Located in the centre of Lima’s heart, a visit to Central will have guests embark on a sensory expedition around the country. Winning The Best Restaurant in South America 2018 award alongside their ranking of sixth place in The World’s 50 Best Restaurants; there’s no doubt that the food is a true reflection of its titles. Central sources the 180 ingredients within the 17 courses from various landscapes and altitudes around Peru. Guests can expect Air Potato from Paiche, Piranha found within the Amazon and even medicinal and very edible Chaco Clay from the highlands mid Peru to Bolivia.
Central – Lima, Av. Pedro de Osma 301, Barranco 15063
Two different worlds of cuisine, flavour and tradition elegantly executed together in the one venue. Led by Chef Mitsuharu Tsumura, Maido found in Peru’s capital city of Lima is a combination of Peru meets Japan. This fusion called Nikkei uses Peruvian style and tradition whilst emphasizing on seafood like the delicate and fresh Japanese cuisine. The menu is described as singing with flavour – especially with its experimental ingredients working cohesively together. Visitors can expect to taste cod marinated in miso, sea urchin rice, 50-hour beef short rib and surprisingly mouth-watering tofu cheesecake ice cream to finish the experience off.
Maido – 399 San Martin Street, Miraflores
Astrid y Gastón
Located in the mid 17th century Casa Moreyra in San Isidro, Lima; since 1994 Astrid y Gastón creates traditional Peruvian meals for its many guests. Specialising in the countries famous dish, ceviche, Astrid y Gastón is also home to the cultural delicacy – guinea pig. Without doubt, the seasonal menu portrays the Peruvian culture, but it also pays homage to various backgrounds, crossing borders and combining flavours. Upon your visit opt for the Dim Sum Cuy filled with guinea pig dim sum in a beetroot bun or the Conchas de Paracas y Ñoquis de Lúcuma, paracas scallops with gnocchi topped with a refreshing Amazonian sauce.
Astrid y Gastón – Av. Paz Soldán 290, San Isidro, Lima 27
Orient Express Restobar
Located in Lima’s dining and bar precinct, Miraflores, Orient Express Restobar will have guests chugging through the finest cocktails and tapas served in Peru. The hidden gem is tucked away in a side street and it comes to no surprise that it is perfectly decorated to match the famous Orient Express – taking the title of one of Peru’s best bars to visit. Featuring stunning wooden décor piled with royal blue cushions, gold furnishings and dim lighting, there’s no denying that a visit to Orient Express Restobar will be nothing short of elegant and mesmerizing. All aboard the ride of your life!
Orient Express Restobar – Alcanfores 463 Int. E4 Pasaje El Suche, Miraflores
Barranco Beer Company
Barranco Beer Company is the perfect haven for any craft beer travellers exploring Peru. With the craft beer industry recently taking South America by storm, there’s no denying that Barranco Beer Company knows how to support this. Taking up its residence in Barranco, the brewery provides an alternative beer experience with a variety of craft beers available on tap. Upon your visit, pair one of their many hearty meals with their Amarguipa American IPA or Avena Buena Stout. Keep an eye out for Lima Beer Week taking place at the beginning of October.
Barranco Beer Company – Av. Almte. Miguel Grau 308, Barranco 15063r
Gran Hotel Bolivar
Less than a two-minute walk from Plaza San Martin, Gran Hotel Bolivar is the perfect pit stop along your Lima travels for classic cocktails. Declared a National Monument in 1972, the 1920’s hotel is in no doubt a tourist attraction in itself. Decorated with a classic, periodical look including a mesmerizing dome roof, pillared rooms, stained glass chandeliers and gold fittings – there’s no denying that your visit will be nothing short of elegant. Pair your visit to the iconic Gran Hotel Bolibar with their renowned Pisco Sour Cathedral.
Gran Hotel Bolivar – Jirón de la Unión 958, Cercado de Lima 15001
Named after the plant-based hallucinogenic tea predominantly found in spiritual ceremonies in the Amazon, the Ayahuasca Restobar Lima is far from any psychedelic experience. The bar, located in the three-story Berninzon Mansion built in 1895 still acquires its original furnishings, charm and originality. Since 2008, Ayahuasca Restobar has taken its residence up in the old colonial style mansion to create a relaxing carnival like environment.
Ayahuasca Restobar – Av San Martin 130, Barranco 15063, Barranco Lima
Found within the heart of Miraflores, Huaca Pucllana is a definite must-see on your travels through Lima. The pre-Incan ancient pyramid ruins date back to approximately 200 – 700 AD and were used as a ceremonial and administrative centre for elite clergymen. Made up of millions of abode bricks and part of the Lima Culture, the pre-Inca temple is one of the most popular archaeological sites within the region and once built it was dedicated to the God Pachacamac. After your visit to Huaca Pucllana, take a trip to Museo Larco where visitors can explore more than 5000 years of ancient Peruvian history. Located in the Pueblo Libre District in Lima, the museum itself is resided within an 18th century building. Known for its pre-Columbian erotic pottery collection, Museo Larco also showcases a large collection of gold and silver jewellery used by notable rulers in Peru.
Searching for Peru’s most jaw-dropping tourist attractions embellished in 16th century architecture and history would be found in no other place than Lima’s plazas. In the heart of the city, amongst the churches, government buildings and the swarm of traffic, visitors to Lima should consider a visit to a plaza or two. Starting off at Plaza de Armas (Main Square of Lima), since its construction in 1535 it is known commonly as the “focal point of the city.” The Main Square of Lima has its meticulous gardens, national flags and even yellow coloured buildings; explorers of Lima will also be able to visit Palacio de Gobierno (Government Palace), Lima Cathedral and Municipal Place (City Hall). Waking along Jirón de la Unión (Union Street) to Plaza San Martin from Plaza de Armas will take approximately 10 minutes. Along the walk, explorers will notice the various Churrigueresque styles on the buildings faces. The final stop, Plaza San Martin, is located within the historic centre of Lima. Paying tribute to Peru’s liberator, José San Martin; since 1988 the plaza has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
The Desert Oasis
Almost a four hour drive south of Lima is the breathtaking desert oasis Huacachina. West of Ica, Huacachina is a small village with its centre point being the charming green lagoon. Surrounding the city’s walls is a ring of meticulous palm trees towering over the hotels, restaurants and bars below. Also known as the “oasis of America”, guests will be amazed by Huacachina’s surrounds – sand dunes expanding up to and over 30 metres high. Upon your day trip to Huacachina, consider taking up sand boarding or renting out a dune buggy to explore Peru’s hidden desert oasis.
Sitting a few streets away from Barranquito Beach is the charming Villa Barranco. Operated as part of Ananay Hotels, Villa Barranco is equip with a rooftop terrace and various rooms from deluxe to junior suite with a balcony and even a master suite with terrace ocean view starting from $300 a night. Inside the republican house built in the 1920’s, guests will find original furnishings and traditional characteristics paired with a modern and bohemian restoration making Villa Barranco one of Lima’s most exquisite boutique hotels.
Villa Barranco – Calle Carlos Zegarra 272 – 274, Barranco
Belmond Miraflores Park
Overlooking Parque Domodossola and Redondo Beach, there’s no denying that Belmond Miraflores Park Hotel is the definition of indulgence. Featuring 89 suites styled using a palette of Peru’s natural colours and ambience; from $430 a night guests will be amazed by the marble bathrooms, private terraces and the luxurious king sized beds. Belmond Miraflores Park is also home to their private spa, restaurants, bar and heated rooftop infinity effect pool.
Belmond Miraflores Park – Av. Malecón de la Reserva 1035, Miraflores
Country Club Lima Hotel
Since 1927, Country Club Lima Hotel has been providing its guests with a timeless and charming experience in the City of Kings. Embracing art, history and elegance; Country Club Lima Hotel is the perfect haven to unwind whilst exploring the beautiful city. Featuring an outdoor pool, fitness centre and spa including hot stone therapy, hydrotherapy and even acupuncture – there’s no denying that you’ll find it hard to leave. From $160 a night, guests will be surprised to know that like the marvellous city, Country Club Lima Hotel showcases 300 pieces in their public areas that were donated from the Pedro de Osma Museum.
Country Club Lima Hotel – Calle Los Eucaliptos 590, San Isidro 15076