City Guide


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Lima offers tourists varied attractions, including wonderful restaurants and several picturesque neighbourhoods to explore. There's the historic Old Town, the bohemian resort district of Barranco, and the fun nightlife centre of Miraflores. The best place to start sightseeing in Lima is the historic and touristic heart of the city, the Plaza Mayor and Plaza San Martin: two squares lined with colonial buildings, museums, stalls, artists, and buskers, connected by a long pedestrian street.

Lima has a number of spectacular churches, but if you only visit one make it the magnificent Baroque Church of San Francisco, which has a richly decorated interior, an impressive library, and intriguing catacombs which can be explored on guided tours.

Three of the best museums in Lima are the Museo de Oro del Peru, which displays a wondrous collection of ancient gold artefacts, the Museo Rafael Larco Herrera, the most popular museum with tourists, and the Museo de la Nacion, which is rundown but still contains some impressive artefacts.

If you are travelling in Lima with kids be sure to visit the Magical Water Circuit (Circuito Magico del Agua), a stunning display of light and water in the Reserve Park, which will delight children and has become one of Lima's most popular attractions.

Lima has been declared the 'Gastronomy Capital of the Americas' and it is an extremely rewarding destination for foodies. The city is full of restaurants catering to every taste and budget and there are many international cuisines on offer, although the local Peruvian fare is unsurpassed. When choosing restaurants, look out for the 'Restaurante Saludable' logo, which is awarded to eateries for cleanliness and good health standards.

Lima Cathedral

Plaza Mayor and Plaza San Martin

A long pedestrian street crowded with shoppers, vendors and sightseers connects Lima's two main plazas (squares) to each other. The heart of the old town is centred on the striking Plaza Mayor, or Plaza de Armas, gracefully colonial with its bronze fountain and old...  see full details

National Museum, Lima

Museo de la Nacion (National Museum)

The anthropological and archaeological National Museum in Lima contains exhibits tracing the history of Peru's ancient civilisations and provides an outstanding overview of the archaeological richness of the country. It is the city's largest and the country's most important museum and the chronological layout guides...  see full details

Incan Gold in Museo de Oro del Peru

Museo de Oro del Peru (Gold Museum)

The Museo de Oro del Peru showcases the gold craftmanship of several centuries of Peruvian history. Housed in a fortress-like building are safe-rooms crammed with treasures from the Inca civilisation and their predecessors. In fact, most of the artefacts are pre-Incan, belying the tendency...  see full details

Museo Rafael Larco Herrera

Museo Rafael Larco Herrera

This fantastic museum houses the largest and most impressive ancient ceramic collection in the world, with thousands of pre-Columbian clay pots on display. The collection concentrates on the refined ceramics of the Moche Dynasty, the people who lived along the northern coast of Peru...  see full details

Church of San Francisco

Church of San Francisco

The most spectacular of Lima's colonial churches, San Francisco is a striking white and yellow building with twin towers and a stone façade. It was one of the few buildings to survive the devastation of the 1746 earthquake and is famous for its underground...  see full details