7 Reasons to Love Lima, Peru

Barrancos famous bridge is one of the many things to love about Limas unique neighborhoods
Barranco's famous bridge is one of the many things to love about Lima's unique neighborhoods | Mia Spingola / © Culture Trip
Brandon Dupre

Lima can sometimes be overshadowed by Peru’s most popular tourist destination, Cusco, but the Peruvian capital has a lot to love about it. The biggest city in Peru offers city life by the beach – a combination impossible not to love – and enough restaurants to keep even the hardest-to-please foodie happy. Here’s a look at the many reasons to love the City of Kings.

The food

Ask anyone about Lima, and one of the first responses you’ll get will be about the food. The gastronomical capital of Peru isn’t a title given, but earned. All the foodies and food traditions of the country descend upon Lima to create the best and most progressive cuisine in the nation.

Peruvian ceviche, also accompanied by an Inca Cola

Big city by the ocean

There are only a handful of truly great cities that can call the ocean their neighbor. Lima has the big city lifestyle with all of the benefits of being close to the beach. After a day of working or tirelessly pursuing tourist sites, you can relax at the beach or throw on your wetsuit to surf.

The architecture

Nicknamed the City of Kings, Lima had long served the Spanish empire. The city was the Spanish stronghold in Peru and is home to some of the country’s oldest Spanish buildings. The finest example is the historical Plaza de Armas where you’ll find the famous Peruvian balconies and restored colonial mansions.

A look at the architecture in Lima’s historical center

The museums

If you want to see museums in Peru, do it all in Lima. The capital is home to the country’s finest museums and most valued artifacts. Standing above the rest, though, is the Larco Museum, which holds the countries oldest artifacts and even has an erotic pottery section.

The barrios (neighborhoods)

Lima is made up of small barrios, each one different from the next. There are working-class barrios, touristic ones and artistic neighborhoods like Barranco that are full of color. To really get an understanding of Lima, you’ll need to explore each unique barrio.

A normal corner store explodes with color in Barranco, Lima

The restaurants

Award-winning restaurants are a common sight in Lima, which is home to some of the continent’s finest dining options. Restaurante Central and Maido have both been crowned the best in South America, with Gastón Acurio’s creation Astrid y Gastón never far behind. Lima has found an audience for fine Peruvian dining, and it is still growing.

The nightlife

Limeños like to party, so it’s no surprise that discotecas are all over the city. Lima has also cultivated a gastropub-bar scene that serves up craft cocktails and beers in renovated colonial mansions. You can rage a dance floor or sip on a specialty drink in a historical building – this city has the best going-out options.

Culture Trips launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes places and communities so special.

Our immersive trips, led by Local Insiders, are once-in-a-lifetime experiences and an invitation to travel the world with like-minded explorers. Our Travel Experts are on hand to help you make perfect memories. All our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.?>

All our travel guides are curated by the Culture Trip team working in tandem with local experts. From unique experiences to essential tips on how to make the most of your future travels, we’ve got you covered.

Culture Trip Spring Sale

Save up to $1,100 on our unique small-group trips! Limited spots.

Edit article