A (Half) Day in Lima

Last time I posted, I was on my way to Peru! Currently, I’m on a flight to the Amazon, and I thought it’d be a great time to catch you guys up on what’s happened so far. Unfortunately, the man sitting in front of me has other ideas, and has leaned his seat so far back that my laptop is scrunched against my stomach. Since when does blogging involve pain?

            Lima was the first city in our Peru itinerary. Lima was actually more of a pit stop for my dad and I to sleep and get ready for our flight to Cusco, but we were able to get a half-day of exploring in. We booked a personal “Pre-Hispanic and Colonial Historic Centre” tour with LimaMentor, and the company was able to pick us up at our hotel in the morning. Our tour guide, Vanessa, was very informative and flexible with our tour schedule. An example of this would be our impromptu stop in El Parque del Amour.

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El Parque del Amour, or Lover’s Park, is located in Miraflores. As we drove past the park, my dad remarked about how nice it looked. Vanessa then told our driver to pull over, and offered to let us walk around and take pictures if we liked. Lover’s Park was never a part of our original itinerary, but I’m grateful that the site immediately became an option once we expressed interest.

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Victor Delfin, a famous Peru sculptor, created the statue in the center of the park during the 90’s. Apparently, on every Valentines Day, young couples come to the famous statue and compete in a “longest kiss contest” held by City Hall. Lover’s Park certainly lives up to its name!

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Another place we visited in Miraflores was Huaca Pucllana, or the Pucllana Temple. The temple was built around 500 AD, and has become somewhat of an archeologist’s paradise with the multiple discoveries of mummies.

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A cool feature of Huaca Pucllana is the option to climb to the top of the temple. When I reached the top, the first thing I noticed was how out of place the site looked among the city. At the same time, I couldn’t help but feel relieved that at least some part of Pucllana had survived amongst its modern counterparts.

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Our next stop was at the Plaza de Armas, or Plaza Mayor, located in the heart of Peru’s government buildings. One of the most famous buildings located around the plaza is the Government Palace, the residence and office of Peru’s president.

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At the plaza, two local teenage girls approached me, and asked me if I spoke English.  Vanessa began speaking to them in Spanish instead, and politely turned them away. It turns out that those girls were doing homework for their English language class, and they were assigned to hold English conversations with tourists. For a second, I wondered how they knew I wasn’t local.  Then I remembered that I was wearing a raincoat in a city that’s notorious for its dry spells. My bad.

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Our last stop was at the Convento de Santo Domingo de Lima, or the Church and Convent of Santo Domingo. This convent holds the urn of Santa Rosa, the patron saint of Lima. If you don’t know what Santa Rosa looks like, her face is on the 200 soles bill, which is the highest bill you can get in Peru. This church and convent boasts a library, the oldest choir stalls in Lima, bell towers and one of the prettiest rose gardens I’ve ever seen in my life.

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I’m obsessed with gardens, so I fell in love with this one pretty quickly. It’s a nice homage to Santa ROS(E)a herself as well!

            Overall, I enjoyed Lima, but I did feel like we hit a lot of the popular attractions within our half-day there. I’m not sure if I would have stayed longer (if given the chance).

            What’s your opinion on Lima? Did I miss an attraction you enjoyed? Leave any and all comments and questions below!

          Hasta Luego,

Kelly

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