An awesome city : Lima and places to stay

5 top attractions in Magdalena del Mar, Lima: South of central Lima and Miraflores, the suburb of Barranco has long been popular with artists and writers. Although not as manicured as Miraflores or as meticulously restored as Lima’s historical center, Barranco has some beautiful 19th- and early-20th-century architecture and the authentic feel that comes in a place where locals far outnumber tourists. You can join them as they sit on the park benches, walk their dogs, and shop or eat at the outdoor patios in front of the street vendors. The small inns and restaurants that line the seaside hills and cliffs are popular places to have dinner and watch the sunset.

If not for the history – Ernest Hemingway and Walt Disney, among many others, have graced the halls of this hotel – then you must go for the pisco. The bartenders at Gran Hotel Bolivar serve a famous drink known as the Pisco Cathedral, made with 5 ounces (150 ml) of pisco. Not only is their pisco drink big; their bartenders also make some of the best pisco sours in the city. One part museum and one part bar; what’s not to like? After you take the tour of the museum, you can sit down and enjoy a pisco cocktail.

There are plenty of excellent art museums in Lima, with the most famous being the Museo de Arte de Lima (MALI), located on the northern edge of the Parque de la Exposicion and hosting objects covering 3,000 years of history, including a superb collection of religious paintings from the Cusquena School. Further south in Barranco, the Museo de Arte Contemporaneo de Lima (MAC Lima) is a good place to sink your teeth into modern and contemporary art. Look out for evening events (En Lima has a list of what’s happening in Lima’s museums) where you can sometimes meet the artists. Don’t miss the nearby MATE, Museo Mario Testino, where spacious rooms are filled with the work of the acclaimed photographer, who rose to fame with his portraits of her Royal Highness, Princess Diana.

For traditional Peruvian handicrafts, try the numerous Artisanal Markets along Av. La Marina, just north of the neighborhood (technically in Pueblo Libre, which we’ll talk about next week). There are all the usual suspects of crafts from all over the country, and it’s a great place to go to get your last-minute gifts. The prices are slightly higher than they would be in a smaller town, but they’re lower than the artisan shopping area of Miraflores. Explore extra images of this fabulous ocean view penthouse on FB. Need a place to stay in Lima, Peru? Explore extra details on Amazing penthouse in Lima, Peru with full ocean view.

If ancient monuments appeal to travelers, then Huaca Pucllana is the place to go; it’s considered one of Lima’s most important monuments. Located in Miraflores, this adobe pyramid was built around 500, but was later covered up and not rediscovered until the mid-20th century. Based on their excavations, archaeologists believe Huaca Pucllana was the ceremonial and administrative center for the early Lima culture. Many artifacts, including textiles, ceramics and animal remains, have been found here to support this theory. At one time, human sacrifices took place here. The complex includes the pyramid and a small museum filled with artifacts.