Start with coffee
Though this is probably how you start every day, it won’t seem very ordinary after you’ve had coffee from Tostaduria Bisetti. This café serves fresh Peruvian coffee, straight from the farm to your cup. You’ll taste some of the best coffee you’ve ever had and the café is easy to get to, located just outside the neighborhood’s main plaza, a couple of shops down from the Starbucks.
Tostaduria Bisetti, Pedro de Osma 116, Barranco, Peru, +51 1 7139565
After you’ve had your coffee, you’re going to feel energized and ready to tackle the day. Channel that energy into a walking tour of Barranco. The walking tours are free, though they accept tips, and will give you a better understanding of Barranco and its famous street art. The tour will also recommend some of Barranco’s best independent art galleries for you to check out.
Barranco is home to some of Lima’s best restaurants, like Canta Rana and Isolina, which was actually ranked on the list of best restaurants in Latin America. There are also local classics like Juanito de Barranco, which serves sandwiches and delicious handmade pisco sours. If it’s your only day in Lima, make sure to eat some fresh ceviche from El Muelle or any of the other cevicherias near the plaza.
Explore the art scene
Barranco is known as the bohemian capital of Lima, so while you’re in the neighborhood you need to explore some of the art galleries that give it its reputation. The most famous gallery in Barranco is Mario Testino’s MATE museum, which features his photography along with other artists’ work. You’ll be able to spend all day checking out Barranco’s local art scene.
Museo MATE, Avenida Pedro de Osma 409, Barranco, Peru, +51 1 2005400
The Bridge of Sighs
As the sun begins to set on Lima, make your way to El Puente de los Suspiros, Lima’s most romantic location. It’s a great place to watch local artists and enjoy the beauty of the little neighborhood of Barranco. Near the bridge, you’ll also find some of Lima’s best picarones, which are like Peruvian donuts made out of sweet potatoes and smothered in syrup.
Barranco rivals Miraflores as the best place to go out in Lima. In Barranco, you’ll find clubs, discotecas and live music within walking distance from each other. A can’t-miss bar is Ayahuasca, which makes some of the best cocktails in an old colonial mansion. You can also grab a bite to eat there before heading to the clubs.
Ayahuasca, Avenida San Martin 130, Barranco, Peru, +51 1 2476751
If you’re looking to get a little crazy in your brief time in Lima, head to El Dragón after your cocktail hour. Known as one of the best clubs in Peru’s capital, it’s always hosting a party and, occasionally, a live music show put on by a local band. If El Dragón doesn’t suit you, head to the street off the main plaza where all the music is coming from—lined with clubs, you’ll have plenty to choose from. Just make sure to bargain with the club’s bouncer so you can get a deal on the cover charge (if there is one).