South America
South America Destination Guide


Lima Lima City (pop., 1996 est.: city, 316,332; 1998 est.: metro area, 7,060,600), capital of PERU. It is located inland from the Pacific Ocean port of CALLAO and near the ANDES MOUNTAINS. Its nickname, El Pulpo ("The Octopus"), refers to its sprawling metropolitan area. It was founded by FRANCISCO PIZARRO in 1535 on the feast of the EPIPHANY, prompting the name Ciudad de Ins Reyes ("City of Kings"), but the name never took. Lima later became the capital of the Viceroyalty of Peru. The city was destroyed by an earthquake in 1746 but was rebuilt. It grew rapidly during the 20th century and now accounts for nearly one-third of Peru's total population. It is the country's economic and cultural centre. Historic sites include the cathedral (begun in the 16th century) and the National University of San Marcos (1551).

Lima, Peru's capital, was founded by Francisco Pizarro on January 6, 1535, the Catholic feast of Epiphany, or the Day of the Kings. Hence the city was first named the City of the Kings. Many colonial buildings have been or are being restored. Unfortunately, much of Lima's colonial charm has been overwhelmed by an uncontrolled population explosion that began in the 1920s. About one third of the nation's 26 million inhabitants now live in Lima, and most of the city is overcrowded polluted and is the main street for bus transport to and noisy.

Much of the growth results,frorn the influx of very poor people from other areas of Peru who come in search of a better life. But jobs are scarce, and most end up living in the pueblos jovenes (literally, young towns). These shantytowns surround the capital and lack electricity, water and adequate sanitation. Lima has a dismal climate. From April to December, the city gets garda, a convective coastal fog that blots out the sun and blankets the buildings in a fine gray mist. During the short Lima summer (January to March), the situation is hardly better. Although the sun comes out, the smog makes walking the streets unpleasant, and the city beaches are overcrowded and not nearly as clean as they could be. The beaches near Barranco and farther south are somewhat better, but not much. Despite all this, there are reasons for visiting the city. The inhabitants are generally friendly and hospitable; there are plenty of opportunities for dining, nightlife and other entertainment; and there is a great selection of museums. Besides, it is almost impossible to avoid Lima.

Places to Visit

Convento de San Francisco
Lima City Walls
Historic centre of Lima
Rafael Larco Herrera Archaeological Museum
Torre Tagle Palace
Gold Museum
Italy Art Museum

Lima Hotels

Suite Service Apart Hotel - Grimaldo Del Solar 111, Lima Phone: +51 (0) 144 41712
Huaychulo Hotel - 2 De Mayo, 494 Miraflores, Lima, L18 Phone: +51 (0) 51124 29716
Basadre Suites Hotel - Av. Jorge Basadre 1310, Lima, 27 Phone: +51 (0) 51144 22423
Hotel Soul Mate Inn - Toribio Pacheco Street 350, Miraflores, Lima, 51 Phone: +51 (0) 22 15046
Residencial Ritz - Ave Salaverry 2599, Lima Phone: +51 (0) 142 26427
Continental Hotel - Jr Puno 196, Lima Phone: +51 (0) 142 75890
Del Pilar Miraflores Hotel - Martir Olaya 141, Lima Phone: +51 (0) 124 27999
Golf Los Incas Apart Hotel - Avenida Cerros De Camacho 500, Lima
Maria Angola Hotel - Avenue La Paz 610, Lima Phone: +51 (0) 144 41280
El Condado Miraflores Hotel - Alcanfores 465, Lima Phone: +51 (0) 144 43614
El Doral Hotel - Avenida Pardo 486, Lima Phone: +51 (0) 144 76305
Garden Hotel - Rivera Navarrete 450, Lima, 27 Phone: +51 (0) 144 21771
Miraflores Cesar's Hotel - Esq La Paz and Canseco, Lima Phone: +51 (0) 144 41212
Sol De Oro Suites Apart Hotel - Jiron San Martin 305, Lima
Crillon Hotel - Avenue Nicolas De Pierola, Lima, Phone: +51 (0) 142 83290
The Hostal Espafia
Excellent Plaza Francia Inn
Familia Rodriguez
Hostal Iquique
Hostal Roma
Hostal Resi dencial Yaki
Hostal de las Artes
Posada del Parque
Hotel Grand Castle
Hikers House Youth Hostel
Witches House
Friend's House
Youth Hostel


Falkland Islands
French Guiana (Fr.)
Trinidad and Tobago
Amazon Rainforest
Amazon River
Angel Falls
Easter Island
Nazca Lines
Lake Titicaca
Iguazu Falls
Machu Picchu
Petrohue Falls
South America History
Inca Civilization
Travel Warnings
Travel Tips