Our first stop on our trip was Lima, Peru! It is located on the Pacific Coast and almost right in the middle of the country’s shoreline. It is the second largest city in South America with a population of 9 million, which is more than Chicago. Also, Lima is the second driest capital in the world (only Cairo, Egypt, is drier). It is known as “Lima the Gray,” and we found this to be true–it was overcast almost every single day. Here are some of our highlights of our time here!
Our apartment was in the Miraflores district, which is modern and safe. Lima is known for is its foodie scene, so there are lots of restaurants in this area. Miraflores sits atop the cliffs overlooking the ocean, and paragliding is a popular activity. We were able to walk from the apartment to the beach in 10 minutes. One thing we found surprising is that the beach is covered in smooth rocks, not sand!
A quick hop on the city’s speedy and crowded (think sardines!) metro bus system takes us to this central area. This is where the main plaza is located, surrounded by the giant Cathedral Basilica of Lima and the Presidential Palace. We were able to visit this area when the country celebrated its patron saint, Saint Rose of Lima (Santa Rosa de Lima). Although we are not Catholic, it was interesting to see the celebration which included military presentations, marching bands, and a religious procession where statues were carried through the city.
Central Lima is also full of many museums. We went to a museum located within the Basilica and Convent of Saint Francis. This church is famous for its catacombs, with an estimated 25,000 bodies buried there. It was kind of creepy to see this! Ryan felt like he was on The Pirates Of The Caribbean ride at Disneyland. Also, Emily wanted to know who had the job of lining up the bones into geometric patterns.
One of our favorite things we did was an amazing night-time water show called the Magic Water Circuit. This included fountains choreographed to music and lights. And above all, the cost was only $1.20 each!
Overall, we enjoyed our time exploring Lima and hope to come back again. While we tried to take it easy during our time there, the first two weeks were occupied by something we’ll discuss in our next blog post, so stay tuned!