Why visit Lima, Peru? and rooms to stay: Leading from Plaza de Armas to Plaza San Martin, pedestrian-only Jiron de la Union is a mix of old and new buildings housing restaurants and shops. Here, you’ll find La Merced church, which was completed in the late 1700s and has an ornate Baroque colonial facade, and Casa de Aliaga. This is one of the oldest and best preserved colonial mansions in South America, dating back to the early days of the city. It has been occupied by the Aliaga family since 1535, handed down through 17 generations, making it the oldest home in South America owned and occupied by a single family. The house, furnished in colonial style with pieces from the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries, is open on a guided tour by advance reservation.
This museum displays the wealthy businessman Yoshitaro Amano’s collection of pre-Colombian textiles and artifacts, amassed throughout his travels. The perfect place to take the kids or a date, El Circuito Mágico del Agua has daily light shows that are projected onto spouting fountains. If you want to get wet, go during the day and enjoy their interactive fountains that shoot water up from the ground. Central Restaurante comes in at number 5 in the Top 50 Best Restaurants in the world, and their chef and owner has been voted best chef in the world. Enjoy the exotic Peruvian cuisine, arranged and served by altitude.
Many of Lima’s once-grand colonial mansions have fallen into a sad state of disrepair. Others, however, have been lovingly preserved, complete with the furnishings and personal effects of their original owners. Most are open to the public by appointment only or through tour agencies, but history buffs (and interior designers) will find the extra pre-planning worthwhile. Those not to miss include Casa di Aliaga, a block north of the Plaza de Armas, which was the former residence of Jeronimo de Aliaga, one of Pizarro’s conquistadors and now the oldest house in the Americas. One block northwest lies Casa de Oquendo, a 19th-century mansion complete with watchtower, while just south of the plaza, you’ll find Palacio Torre Tagle, an 18th-century mansion with finely carved wooden balconies that’s now home to the Peruvian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Campos de Vida Natural Foods – Corner of Ugarte and L. Prado. A little cafe and grocery store serving up homemade yogurt and integral breads, as well as Peruvian health foods like quinoa. Candy (corner of Brasil and Cusco) – This is the closest grocery store, although a quick taxi ride will get you to the posh Vivanda on Av. Javier Prado, or the small Plaza Vea on Av. Brasil. Candy is pretty bare-bones, but it’ll get you what you need. The produce section is a bit wilty, but why are you shopping for produce in a grocery store when you should be at the Magdalena Market? Read even more pictures of this incredible ocean view penthouse on @AmazingPeruPenthouse on Facebook. Need a place to stay in Lima, Peru? Explore even more info at Magdalena del Mar penthouse to book.
The Museo Larco is a must-see for travelers interested in pre-Columbian art. The private museum, founded by Rafael Larco Herrera, is located in an 18th century building that was built over a seventh century pyramid. The museum’s collections, representing 5,000 years of Peruvian history, are arranged chronologically. The museum’s total collection numbers thousands of pieces. It is especially famous for its collection of pre-Columbian erotic pottery, which includes humans performing sex acts not only with each other but with gods and the dead. Equally impressive is the Gold and Silver Gallery, which includes objects such as funeral masks and jewelry worn by priests and rulers.