Peru's capital with over eight million residents, Lima perches on a cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Famous for its gastronomic food, the capital is also very interesting for its pre-Columbian culture. Lima is shrouded in history, gloriously messy and full of aesthetic delights.
This post is written by Laurie Pertusa, travel writer for Peru Excepcion. Careful: you may want to take a flight ticket right now after reading this post... I do.
Welcome to Lima, a mythical country's capital with a stunning historic city center declared Cultural World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Discover what to do in lima in 48 hours...
48h in Lima - Day 1
9 am - First, explore the gorgeous district Miraflores, overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Rent a bike and ride around the barrio, along with a nice sea breeze. With a direct access to the ocean and a all its bars, restaurants and clubs, Miraflores is one of my favorite districts in Lima.
11 am - Have a break at the Buena Vista, the only coffee shop right on the ocean. A peaceful place with a wooonderful viewpoint!
Noon - Stroll in Chorrillos, the harbor district. With its colorful fish market, you´ll be right into the daily life of thousands of Limeños, the inhabitants of Lima! If you feel like cooking a traditional Cebiche, go for it and buy your fish there.
1 pm - Enjoy an excellent meal at the restaurant La Mar, owned by the chef Gastón Acurio, a famous Peruvian cook. It is also the perfect place to discover how typical Peruvian food can mix with Asian influences...
4 pm - Go down to Playa Herradura for a surf session. Remark: the waves can be huge, it's not a place for beginners! Go for it only if you can handle it, or go around the Costa Verde and take a surf lesson with a surf school such as Etnia or Olas Perú. Then wander around the beach, enjoy the sea view until sunset... Breathe and relax.
9 pm - Try Pedro Miguel Schiaffino’s new restaurant, a calm cosy place. In an Amazonian setting full of art pieces, his fruit cocktails are to die for, as well as the exotic refined cooking!
48h in Lima - Day 2
10 am - Back to the Miraflores district: savor a great breakfast to start the day. El Pan de la Chola offers organic and homemade products to give you the energy required for your second day in Lima.
11 am - Explore Barranco, a district with a colorful bohemian identity. You will discover a stunning modern architecture, and probably appreciate the centenary trees' shade on a hot summer day! Nearby, your can visit the museum MATE, that shows photographs of the Peruvian photographer Mario Testino in a lovely chic gallery -you'll see portraits of Madonna, Kate Moss, Gisele, Brad Pitt and Princess Diana... There's also a fine exhibition with photos of Cusco's inhabitants in their traditional costumes. After the MATE, you can have a look at the MAC, Lima's Art Museum.
1:30 pm - Half and hour drive from Miraflores, head up to the historic Corazon of Lima. For lunch, grab a yummy countryside jam sandwich at the legendary Bar Cordano, near the authentic plaza de Armas -you'll love it.
3 pm - Unearth the treasures of Peruvian history! Admire Plaza de Armas, the religious center of Lima built by the Conquistadors, Lima Cathedral and the beautiful Palacio del Gobierno. Then take a walk from la plaza San Martin to Plaza Mayor, along the lovely Boza street. You'll cross old houses with balconies, and finally get to the well known church La Merced.
5 pm - To really feel the Peruvian heritage, visit la Casa de la Gastronomia. It is dedicated to the local cuisine, in all its forms. Natural food resources, street food, international migration, Asian influences... Everything is introduced to explain the delicious Peruvian food of today.
6:30 pm - Spend the evening in stunning Bolivar hotel. It's known as the place where the best Pisco, an explosive cocktail with lemon and ginger, is served. You just can’t miss it!
8:30 pm - Time for dinner... the local restaurant Tanta is a must-try. The menu is perfect, with many excellent traditional dishes such as empanadas, tiradito de cocona, prawns, snails and bamboo… many names that stir up our sense of tasting!
Did you know Peru is actually classified as "megadiverse", home to more than 20.000 species of plants and animals, almost 6.000 of which are endemic? Dozens, if not hundreds of influential cultures have risen there within the last 11.000 years... It really is a fascinating place to travel to!