extension and population
| Brief historic
Main attractions in the capital city |
Other attractions near the capital |
Typical dishes and beverages |
EXTENSION AND POPULATION
The department of Lima is located in the central occidental
part of the country. To the west, it is bathed by the waters
of the Pacific Ocean, to the east, it limits with the Andes.
It has an extension of 33,820
km² (13,058 sq ml) and a population of over 7'000,000
The capital is the city
of Lima, one of the most important in South America,
and declared Cultural Patrimony of the World. The weather
is mild and fresh all year round, due to the its proximity
to the seashore and the absence of rain.
Conqueror Francisco Pizarro founded
the city of Lima, known as City of Kings, on January
18, 1535. He chose the banks of the Rímac river for
being a location strategically and geographically perfect.
The word Lima comes from the word Rímac,
which in quechua, the official language in the Inca
empire, means hablador or talkative.
During the Viceroyship, between
the sixteenth and seventeenth century, Lima became the most
important and powerful city in South America. It was also
the cultural and commercial center of the region.
On July 28, 1821, after the decadence
of the Viceroyship and a series of emancipation and independence
movements, General José de San Martín proclaimed
the independence of Perú in the small village of Huaura,
to the north of Lima. The Peruvian Republic was born.
ATTRACTIONS IN THE CAPITAL CITY
Plaza de Armas.
The main square is located in the same place where Francisco
Pizarro founded it. The Government Palace, the Cathedral and
the Municipal Palace are located around the square.
Churches and Monasteries.
San Francisco, Santo Domingo, La Merced, Las Nazarenas, San
Pedro, San Agustín, Los Descalzos, San Marcelo and
Santa Rosa, many of which are more the 300 years old. These
churches house the mortal remains of the local saints, gorgeous
sculptures, wood carvings, and other pictorial work of inestimable
Museums and Mansions.
Torre Tagle, Casa de Pilatos, Palacio de Osambela, Museo de
la Nación, Museo Nacional de Antropología y
Arquelogía, Museo Nacional de Historia, Museo de Oro
del Perú, Museo Amano, Museo de Arte Italiano, Museo
de Arte, Museo Larco Herrera. Some of these buildings exhibit
beauty Colonial architecture. Other mansions or casonas
are currently sites of important public and private institutions.
As a whole, the group gives the visitor a complete view of
the history of this country, from Inca times to our days.
These buildings also hold millenary pieces of pottery, textiles,
gold and silver pre-Hispanic work, Colonial and Republican
work in silver.
Archeological Sites, such
as Huallamarca and Pucllana, are inserted in the center of
two modern districts, San Isidro and Miraflores.
District of Miraflores.
It is modern and has a daily intense commercial, cultural
and artistic activity. Site were many discotheques, restaurants,
and casinos are located.
District of Barranco,
which still keeps in its buildings the peculiarity of the
first years of the Republican period. Many prestigious artists
and writers live there. It is also crowded with typical local
taverns and restaurants.
The Green Coast is a row
of beaches that crosses six districts. Sea lovers, swimmers,
surfers or those who practice parasail and handglide can easily
ATTRACTIONS NEAR THE CAPITAL
Balneario de Ancón,
a modern resort in a small fishing bay, located at 38
km (23.6 ml) north from Lima.
Reserva Nacional de Lachay
is located on Km 105 of the North Pan-American Highway. With
a variety of micro climates, this natural reserve has abundant
vegetation and is the habitat for wild animals. There are
also archeological sites of pre-Hispanic cultures.
Fortaleza de Paramonga, located
on Km 209 of the North Pan-American Highway, is an adobe fortress
constructed during the Inca empire.
Ruinas de Puruchuco. Located
at ten minutes from the center of the city, this pre-Inca
house gives a sense of how the ancient Peruvians lived 2,000
years ago. It has a site museum.
Marcahuasi is an magnificent
stone forest located at 4,000 m.a.s.l. (13,123 ft).
With time the erosions on the rocks have produced human and
animal forms easily identified. UFO experts consider this
as a meeting point. It takes several hours to get there, including
a long walk.
Pachacamac. Located at
33 km (20.5 ml) from the capital and very near the most beautiful
south beaches, this pre-Inca temple was constructed on adobe
at different levels, with passages and labyrinths. There is
also a museum that exhibits archeological pieces found while
unearthing the site.
Cañete is a province
of the department of Lima. It takes an hour to get there by
car or bus. The valley has lovely beaches, fishing inlets
and archeological zones. Lunahuaná is part of
the Cañete valley, surrounded by impressive natural
areas where to practice rafting, fishing and hunting.
DISHES AND BEVERAGES
Since Lima is so close to the
sea, the main Limeño dishes are naturally based
on fish and seafood. Among these, the famous cebiche,
escabeche, conchitas a la parmesana and shrimp
cocktail stand out.
Other well-known Limeño
dishes are cau-cau, anticuchos, ají
de gallina. There are also several typical desserts, such
as the mazamorra morada, picarones, suspiro a la
limeña, arroz con leche, turrón de Doña
Among the refreshing drinks,
chicha morada is recommended, and as appetizers,
the international pisco sour, with Peruvian pisco
and lemons, and sugar.
January 12 through 19. Anniversary
of Lima. Festivities to celebrate the founding of the
Last Week in March. Surco
Grape Harvest Week. During a week, this vine growing district
of great tradition holds several activities hosted by the
major of the city and the elected Queen.
Holy Week. During this
time, the city of Lima shows a spirit of retreat remembering
the passion of Christ. Processions and several religious acts
take place in different parts of the city.
Third Week in May.
The National Peruvian Gait Horse Contest. This
contest takes place in Mamacona, a tourist resort at
a walking distance from the Pachacamac ruins. There is also
a wonderful exhibition of these gait horses, who descend from
the fine Arab breeds and that in Perú got their very
special style of pace.
28 and 29. Independence Day. Public activities
include, military and school parades, a Te Deum in
the Cathedral, and horse races at the Monterrico Race Track.
The Feria del Hogar, the biggest commercial fair, and
the Feria de La Molina, a well-known international
music festival, open during these days. Famous national and
foreign artists are invited to participate.
August 20 through 30. Cañete
Week. Anniversary of the province of Cañete. It
is a ten-day celebration with folkloric festivals, various
competitions and adventure sports.
August 30. Santa Rosa
de Lima. Pilgrimage to Quives, the district of the province
of Canta, where Santa Rosa lived. In Lima, devotees visit
the monastery to write down their wishes and throw them into
its famous well.
Señor de los Milagros Month, patron of the city.
On October 18, 19 and 28, one the most multitudinary processions
worldwide takes place. The religious fervor of the devotees
expresses in front of the sacred image. Painted in 1650, the
famous image has remained intact in spite of time, earthquakes
and other cataclysms. During the whole month the litter is
taken in a trailer to distant places throughout the city.
End of October through mid-November,
the Feria del Señor de los Milagros. This
is the bullfight season in which the best toreros in
the world participate. It takes place in the Plaza de Acho,
built 200 years ago on the orders of the Viceroy to please