Lima, city of kings and viceroys, capital of Peru, has always been a sort of cultural oasis. Since its foundation in 1535, only some decades were necessary to make this city the most important metropolis of the Spanish America that concentrated the power and the wealth of all the commercial and cultural activities of the Viceroyalty.
Baroque and Renaissance temples, mansions and small palaces, universities, archbishoprics and an intense cultural activity characterized Lima from the dawn of XVII century. Synonymous of a mestization that surprises, the city of Lima displays three great values to be proud of: its polished and innovating cooking art, considered one of the best of the world; its monumental architecture, Cultural Patrimony of the Humanity; and its skillful people, expert in adapting to change.
In addition Lima offers to the tourist excellent museums, modern malls and of relaxation centers, as well as attractive archaeological and natural sites.
Lima is located to borders of the Pacific, which determines a specific climate characteristic of a coastal city. It has two noticeable climatic stations: winter (from May to September) with average temperatures of 18°C and moderate humidity with light drizzles; and a summer one (December and March) characterized by sunny days and temperatures that reach 30°C.
The historic center of Lima was declared a UNESCO Cultural World Heritage it has innumerable constructions and architectonic monuments of great beauty. Among the most important are: The Cathedral that dates from the XVI century with a beautiful choral masonry; the Church of Santo Domingo, one of the most beautiful domes of the city; and the Church of San Francisco, the greater monumental set of Colonial Art of America; with its basilica of 21 altars, its convent of cloisters, the museum of profundis and its underground catacombs. The churches surprise by their finishing and majesty, as well as the large houses like the Torre Tagle Palace, the Riva Aguero y Aliaga House that next to the residential areas of the contemporary city, makes of Lima an unforgettable destiny.
Rafael Larco Herrera Museum
The Larco Herrera archaeological museum houses the biggest private collection of pre-columbian Peruvian Art of the world.
Since its foundation in 1926 in Trujillo, and then transferred to Lima in 1958, it is exhibiting to the public 45000 pieces organized by topics in its different large halls.
We can find the hall of metals, of ceramic, of textiles, lithic, erotic, of the cultures, the great vault of jewels and the classified storehouses which contain millions of pieces classified by Rafael Larco Hoyle himself, the founder of the museum.
Museum of Archaeology, Anthropology and History of Peru
Located in an old residency of Viceroys and liberators, it is considered the museum par excellence of Peru. Here are preserved the famous monuments of stone from the formative era 1000 B.C. the “Estela Raimondi” and the “Tello Obelisk”. It also presents the most important textile collection, showing fabrics from the pre-ceramic period to the Inca era, and an important collection of metals of the ancient Peru. It is remarkable the new hall called “Tawantinsuyo” that shows a summary of 100 years of Inca Empire, illustrated on scale models and virtual recreations.
Gold Museum of Peru
This wonderful museum allows appreciating an overwhelming collection of gold pieces of diverse pre-Columbian cultures, some of more than 3.000 years of age. Objects and jewels of incalculable value are exhibited, worked in gold, silver and precious stones, emphasizing the ornaments and objects that at their time of splendor the Incas, children of the God Sun and monarchs of the vast Inca Empire used. The Museum Gold of Peru exhibits in addition a valuable collection of old and modern arms that consider as one of the best ones of their sort at world-wide level. In these rooms are found armors, uniforms and objects of diverse times and places, some even date from 1.300 years A.C. This show is known as the Museum of Weapons of the World.
At 31 km to the south of Lima is the splendid and extensive archaeological citadel of Pachacamac, an old pre-Columbian oracle. Constructed entirely with mud bricks, it was considered along with Cuzco, one of the main cult places in pre-Hispanic Peru. It was a main sacred and ceremonial place of the Christian era where thousands of pilgrims arrived to render tribute to the Pachacamac God, creator of the universe.
It includes pyramidal temples and enclosures built by several pre-Columbian cultures, although the Inca part (1440 – 1533) is the best conserved. The archaeological site exhibits carefully recovered palaces, places and temples, besides a Site Museum that lodges an interesting collection of pieces found in the place.
Miraflores is without a doubt the tourist and hotel district par excellence of Lima. It has great modern commercial zones, parks and green areas of great beauty and one of the most concurred beaches (Costa Verde). It has an intense social, artistic and cultural activity, a district of coffees, pubs, restaurants, theaters, cinemas and galleries of art, besides lodging an interesting pre-Inca temple, the Huaca Pucllana, one of the numerous archaeological remains in Lima.
San Isidro is the “Garden” of Lima, characterized by its green areas and exclusive residential districts. Here are some of the most famous restaurants, hotels and shows of the capital. San Isidro still conserves some of the solemnity of luxury suburb that characterized it since the beginning of the century, like the area of El Olivar, named after the centennial olive trees that still grow in its parks. Another one of its attractiveness constitutes one of the pre-Columbian preserved buildings, the Huaca Huallamarca, scenenary of occasional artistic presentations.
The main Bohemian district of Lima was decades back, the fashionable spa of the aristocracy of Lima. In the last years its parks have returned to bloom, its large houses of republican style have been embellished and the artistic shows abound in its streets. It is famous the Bridge of the Sighs, favorite corner of the ones in love, and its seafront facing the Circuit of Beaches of the Green Cost.