Lima is a huge metropolis consisting of different districts with different demographic backgrounds. You can find the “better” places mostly in the coastal regions. The historic center however is about 10 km from the sea, but close to the river.
Last weekend we had the chance to visit the historic center. It took us about an hour to get there from where we stay. Mostly because of the crazy traffic.
Plaza de Armas
This is probably the best place to start the city tour. You can walk to most of the historic sights and enjoy all the pretty buildings around. For example..
Cathedral of Lima
It is located right on the main square with the palace of government and the city hall right next to it. Love how it is all arranged with the water fountain and the palm trees.
Museum of Literature
Just around the main square you can enter this museum for free. (Didn’t take pictures from the outside, oops!)
Basilica of San Fransisco
Here you can also go down to see the catacombs and the museum.
Plaza Bolivar with the Congress and the Museo de la Inquisicion
Unfortunately the museum was closed for reconstruction but they told us it would reopen in August, too late for us. :-(
Plaza San Martin
Walking through a busy shopping street takes you from the Plaza de Armas to Plaza San Martin.
There is no big city without it. We came here for Chinese New Year and it was packed!
Iglesia de Santa Rosa
A nice church and green area honoring the saint Rosa.
There are a lot of places to eat good Peruvian food in the historic city. Most restaurants offer cheap lunch menus for a few Soles and you get a starter, main and in out case even a small dessert. If you’re hot there are also countless vendors you can buy all kinds of chilled drinks, ice cream and much more.
After all I felt surprisingly safe in the city. There are a lot of guards around that you can ask if you are lost. Of course we kept all our belongings safe and didn’t provoke any potential burglars. However being white you will definitely get stared at by every other passerby, so I always had mixed feelings.
The historic center is definitely worth a visit even if it is just for half a day, as you can walk around a lot and enjoy all the great historic architecture with the South American flair.