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10 can’t-miss places to visit in Lima

Leonor Macedo

Angelo Dal Bó

For the first time, Peru is going to host the Pan American and Parapan American Games. The second biggest sports event in the world will be held from July 24 to September 1 in several venues, scattered across Lima and surrounding areas. For anyone who’s going to watch the competitions in person, we’ve made a guide containing can’t-miss attractions in the Peruvian capital for you to explore between the events. Get ready to embrace the city’s pace.

 

Malecón in Miraflores

You’re likely to visit the Miraflores boardwalk many times. The most courageous paraglide from one of the edges of the cliff with a sea view; others just go there to watch the sunset. Next to the 'El Beso' statue, in Parque del Amor, loving couples don’t hold back on the selfie taking.

Malecón de La Reserva

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Huaca Pucllana

Huacas were sacred spaces used by native peoples to celebrate rituals. There are over 200 all over Lima: Pucllana is in the heart of Miraflores, conserved by the neighbors themselves and with guided tours that explain which ceremonies were held there. The night tours have a mysterious aura, but the day tours allow you to climb to the top of the pyramid, from where you can see the contrast between old and new.

Calle General Borgoño, 8

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3. The markets of Surquillo and San Isidro

Quinoa and beans, corn and fruit of all colors, potatoes you've never seen before, fresh seafood. At the markets of Surquillo and San Isidro, you can purchase ingredients to cook at home or eat them right there, at one of the quite inexpensive restaurants.

Mercado Surquillo: Avenida Ricardo Palma Mercado

San Isidro: Avenida Augusto Pérez Araníbar

 

Restaurant Maido

In addition to Central and Astrid & Gastón, another Lima restaurant is listed among the world's best. Maido, run by chef Mitsuharu 'Micha' Tsumara, blends Peruvian and Japanese cooking and is at the top of the list of 'Latin America's 50 best restaurants.' Since you’re in Lima, give yourself this present: their tasting menu has 11 courses, and you’ll never forget the experience (but be sure to make reservations beforehand because the place is very popular).

Calle San Martín, 399

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Parque de la Reserva

Opened in 1929, Parque de la Reserva inaugurated its Circuito Mágico del Agua, with 13 fountains, in 2017. At night, they gain colors and music for a show that attracts tourists and locals from all parts of the city. At the main fountain, Fuente de La Fantasía, the water jets wriggle like dancers and display images from the Peruvian culture.

Jirón Madre de Dios

 

Barrio Chino

To walk here you need to overcome obstacles, but it's worth going through the crowd in this business area to eat at one of the city's traditional chifas – a kind of restaurant that blends Chinese and Peruvian cooking. At Chifa Wa Lok, portions are large. Order the chaufa rice with duck or the Maifan saltado especial – fried rice noodles with vegetables and an assortment of meats.

Chifa Wa Lok: Jirón Paruro, 878

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Museo Larco

As if the collection with approximately 45,000 pieces portraying 5,000 years of Peruvian history weren't enough, this is one of the most beautiful museums in the world. The perfectly conserved manor is surrounded by flower gardens. Next to the erotic gallery, with hundred-year-old statues that show the lustful side of Peruvian native peoples, is Café del Museo, a great place to have lunch or dinner – since the Larco is open every day until 10 p.m.

Avenida Simón Bolivar, 1515

 

Lima Historic City Center

A Unesco World Heritage Site, the historic city center is formed by protected streets and structures surrounding and in Plaza Mayor (also known as Plaza de Armas). The tour starts there, among the Cathedral, Palacio de Gobierno, Palacio Municipal, Clube da União, and Palacio Arzobispal.

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Puente de los Suspiros

Make a wish and hold your breath to cross the bridge, one of the icons of the bohemian neighborhood of Barranco (the good news is it's pretty short). Rumor has it your wish comes true.

 

Juanito de Barranco

On one side of Barranco's Plaza de Armas, you can hardly see this simple bar among other much fancier establishments. Opened in 1937, it still maintains the same features as the place inaugurated by the late Juan, now run by his children and grandchildren. At the counter, cold draft beers and sandwiches made with jamón (a sort of ham) or jamón del norte (with a smokier flavor).

Avenida Almirante Miguel Grau, 270, Barranco