The bustling capital of Lima has more than enough to entertain visitors for a couple of days. But before visiting the City of Kings, you should learn about the attractions that make Lima, well, uniquely Lima. Check out our guide to the 11 things you can only do in Lima.
Enjoy Peru’s best museums
If you want to see museums in Peru then Lima is your place. The nation’s capital is home to all of Peru’s most famous and well maintained museums and all containing the country’s most prized possessions. The top museums to visit are Larco Museum, MALI and Museo Oro.
Surf in a big city
There’s not many places in the world that offer big city lifestyle with year-round waves but Lima is one of them. You’ll find waves only a short walk down from Miraflores and one of Peru’s best breaks, la herradura, only a short drive away. Lima is a great city to be a surfer in!
Paraglide over the Pacific Ocean
For those looking for a little bit of a rush, you can take a paraglide over Miraflores, the cliffside and the Pacific Ocean. Head to Lima’s Miraflores district and you’ll find paragliders taking off all year. It’s there for you if you can muster the courage.
Enjoy the world’s best restaurants
Restaurante Central and Maido are just two of the star-studded restaurants that call Lima home. Both respectfully rank in the top 10 in the world and are part of Lima’s culinary revolution. Now world-class restaurants abound, serving Peruvian classics like ceviche with modern twists.
Big city ruins
There, embedded in the thick of high rises and Lima traffic, stands the ancient pyramid Huaca Pucllana, which dates back to around 500 A.D., well before the Inca controlled Peru. The ruins are a sight to behold amongst the modernity of Lima. You can take tours of the site or even have dinner on the ruins at night.
Best ceviche in the world
Peru’s flagship dish is without a doubt ceviche. You can find delicious plates of the dish served nearly everywhere, all fresh and absolutely delicious.
The drink that calls Peru home was invented and mastered in Lima, which means no trip to the capital is complete without trying the country’s national cocktail. If you want to drink a glass with historic company, go to El Gran Hotel Bolivar, where JFK, Walt Disney and Hemingway all stayed and enjoyed the drink.
Walk the historical center
Lima’s historical center is a living museum. You can see some of the country’s finest colonial architecture and most striking buildings.
Eat chifa in Barrio Chino
Limeños and visitors alike are obsessed with chifa, Peruvian Chinese cuisine. It is one of Peru’s most beloved food and the very best is found in barrio Chino, near Lima’s historical center. Gorge out on chaufa (fried rice) and lomo saltado (a stir fry with meat and french fries), two of the most beloved chifa dishes.
Oldest colonial house in South America
Casa di Aliaga is widely considered the oldest colonial house in South America. The mansion dates back to the 16th century and was a gift from Pizarro to one of his wealthiest backers. The mansion has survived countless earthquakes, fires and even wars. You can take tours of the house and view its beautifully remodeled interior.
Ancient Peruvian erotic pottery
Museo Larco is now famous for its collection of pre-Incan pottery, replicas of which can be found at any gift shop in Peru. The images are entertaining and worth a trip to Museo Larco alone.