Lima is the capital of Peru, with the hustle and bustle of people in a huge built up city. It was way more modern and advanced than I expected, with the normal traffic jams and pollution in the air. It’s a beautiful city full of history and architecture, offering lively markets, coastal beaches as well as a good place to have a fun night out and hit the bars or clubs or even sing your hearts out at karaoke.
When we arrived at the bus terminal in Lima, we catch a taxi to our hostel, which end up being a funny ride. First the taxi driver didn’t know where he was going, the he realised he had no petrol and the he a bit of road rage. Peruvian drivers!
By the time we got to the hostel, it was late so we just checked in, chilled and planned the next day before going to sleep as we were tired.
In the morning, we woke up quite early to have a shower and eat complimentary breakfast of fruit, bread, juice and tea. The American girl and I left the hostel, walking in the hot sun to the meeting point of the free walking tour. As you may have guess, I do enjoy a walking tour when I first arrive in a city. It just gets you familiar with their surrounds, you are able to pick the guides brain about the place like recommendation as well as meeting new people. The meeting point was at 11.00am at Kennedy park in Miraflores. We were then guided to a craft beer bar, where we should have been given a beer, but unfortunately the taps weren’t cold so they didn’t want to serve it to us.
When the guide was ready, we had to introduce ourselves to the of about 10 of us from all around the world. Then we followed the guide to the tram station to take it to the historical centre. We started in the main plaza where there was a cathedral, the Houses of Parliament and the city hall. It was beautiful. Here, we watched the changing of the guards, where they marched in front of the Houses of Parliament doing a slight dance.
Our guide took us around the area explaining the history of Lima, Peru and the indigenous people as well as showing us different buildings. He was extremely lively, knowledgeable and spoke English well. As part of the tour, we tasted some coffee, tasted ‘Papa a la Huancaina’ (a tradition dish of potato, egg and cheese sauce) and sampled some chocolate products in a chocolate museum.
At the end of the tour, we stopped in a market with a small pisco sours stall. Sitting on stalls, we all tasted different flavoured pisco sours. My favourite was Maracuya (similar to passion fruit).
Afterward, we were debating what to do as some people were going to explore and others wanted to eat. In the end, the guide took us back to Miraflores, where three of us decided to grab a bite to eat. We ordered the meal of the day, where they didn’t understand the concept of vegetarian so I ended up picking around the food. After, we wandered back to the hostel to chill for the rest of the afternoon as well as taking my dirty washing to the launderette.
With some of the others from the walking tour, we had planned to meet up that evening for a light show. Once we had got ready, we scurried to the tram station to meet up with some of the other, where we caught it to the stadium. It was now starting to get dark.
Close by, we bought a ticket at a cheap price to enter the huge garden. Inside were many fountains, which were beautiful. Then we watched the light show, where lights were reflected in to the fountains, creating different patterns and pictures with music blaring out. It was awesome with the water spurting out at different paces creating amazing images. The day we were there, they had a special pisco sours party, where there were many stall selling all sorts of pisco sours. Many of the stall owners were giving us sample of different types. We took advantage of this and had tasters from every stall, making us feel a little tipsy. We were the only foreigners there, which meant we were the centre of attention. There was a band playing a variety of music with people dancing around. Of course, we bought some glasses of Piscos and some snacks. It was so much fun being there, with us dancing with lots of the people and having our photos taken.
After, we took the tram back to Mirafloras to enjoy a night out. Here, there were many bars and restaurants, where initially we entered a karaoke place but left when we realised it was dead. We sat in a bar drinking and playing drinking games. We continued the night in a club, where, again, we were the only foreigners, and just danced the night away, getting back to our hotel at the early hours of the morning.
The following day, we leisurely got up and ate breakfast. I had to sort a few things out as I was leaving Lima that evening and my friend was returning to the US as her travels had ended. At lunchtime, we walked to a recommend ceviche restaurant we had found on the internet, not too far from our hostel. The cevicheia was a small place, packed with customers, where we had to take a number and wait to be seated. We started talking to another guy from India, who ended up joining us for lunch. We ordered ceviche with mixed fish and yuka chips. Ceviche is a traditional dish in Peru, which I wanted to try even though I had given up fish at Christmas. It’s a mixed of fish, raw onions and tomatoes with chillies coated in lime juice. It was delicious and definitely something to taste if you are in Peru.
After, we bid our farewells to the guy and walked towards the coast. The landscape on top of the cliff was great with views of the sea. There were people paragliding around the area making it look picturesque. We wandered around the parks here and relaxed on the pebble beach, chatting and people watching with people swimming in the ocean. We made friends with a little girl here too.
Then, we strolled back to the hostel, where I tried to collect my washing on the way but it wasn’t quite ready yet. I returned at the time they said but when they gave it to me, I knew that there were a few things were missing as it wasn’t heavy enough. I tried to explain this to them, where we were debating through Google translate for an hour with no conclusions as they ‘couldn’t find’ my hoodie or a few t-shirts. As I had already paid before realising, they wouldn’t give me my money back or pay for the cost of the missing items. In the end, I had to leave because I need to get ready for my night bus. Conclusion: another lost hoodie in 2 weeks.
Back at the hostel, I packed my backpack and said goodbye to my friend before hopping into a taxi, which took me to the bus terminal. I checked in and waited here, eating some food before boarding my bus to take me to Huaraz, where I had planned to meet girl from Australia, who I met on the walking tour. The journey was pretty standard, falling asleep for most of the journey and arriving around 6 in the morning.