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Lima's 12 Best Tourist Spots

Lima, Peru's sprawling capital, may not immediately reveal its charms, but it's a city rich with cultural and historical attractions. Nearly a third of Peru's population resides here, and the city offers a unique blend of colonial architecture, acclaimed museums, and culinary delights. Lima was founded in 1535 by Spanish conqueror Francisco Pizarro and was once known as "the King of Cities." To discover the best of Lima, let's explore some of its top tourist attractions.

1. Plaza de Armas

Plaza de Armas

Plaza de Armas, or Plaza Mayor, is the historical heart of Lima and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The square is framed by the cathedral, the Archbishop's Palace, and the Palacio del Gobierno, where you can witness the changing of the guard. The pedestrian-only Jiron de la Union leads to the Baroque La Merced church, and the colonial Casa de Aliaga can be visited by reservation.

2. Convento de San Francisco

Convento de San Francisco

The Convento de San Francisco is renowned for its catacombs and impressive religious art collection. The library boasts antique books, and the church features a unique Last Supper mural. Despite damage from earthquakes, the church remains one of Lima's best-preserved colonial buildings.

3. Cathedral


The Cathedral of Lima, a prominent feature of Plaza de Armas, showcases Spanish Baroque architecture and houses the tomb of Francisco Pizarro. Visitors can also explore the Museum of Religious Art and enjoy the courtyard tea room.

4. Circuito Magico del Agua (Magic Water Tour)

Circuito Magico del Agua (Magic Water Tour)

The Magic Water Tour in the Park of the Reserve is a record-breaking fountain complex with 13 fountains, including the Fuente Mágica and the Fuente Túnel de las Sorpresas. A laser and picture show at the Fuente de la Fantasia is synchronized to music.

5. Parque del Amor (Love Park)

El Parque del Amor in Miraflores, Lima

Parque del Amor, located in Miraflores, offers a romantic setting with Gaudí-inspired mosaics and a sculpture of an embracing couple. It's a perfect spot for sunset views.

6. Miraflores

Aerial view of Miraflores, Lima

Miraflores is a blend of modernity and colonial charm, known for its parks, shopping, and "New Peruvian" cuisine. The Museo Amano showcases a collection of Peruvian ceramics and textiles.

7. Museo de la Nacion (National Museum)

Museo de la Nacion

The Museo de la Nacion is the largest museum in Lima, offering a comprehensive overview of Peru's history. Highlights include a replica of the Lord Sipan's grave and a chronological display of artifacts.

8. Larco Museum

Larco Museum

The Larco Museum, housed in an 18th-century mansion, boasts a vast collection of Peruvian ceramics, especially from the Moche and Chimú cultures, as well as gold work and textiles.

9. Santo Domingo

Santo Domingo

The historic Santo Domingo church and monastery contain the relics of Peruvian saints and feature tile mosaics depicting the life of St. Dominic.

10. Huaca Pucllana

Huaca Pucllana

Huaca Pucllana is a pre-Columbian pyramid in Miraflores, serving as a ceremonial and administrative center for the Lima Culture.

11. Museo Nacional de Arqueología, Antropología, e Historia

National Archaeology, Anthropology, and History Museum

This museum provides an insightful look into Peru's history with a collection of ceramics, textiles, and artifacts, including the Tello Obelisk and Estela Raimondi.

12. Las Nazarenas

Las Nazarenas

The Church of the Nazarenas is home to El Señor de los Milagros, an image associated with miracles and the centerpiece of an annual procession.

13. Barranco


Barranco is a bohemian neighborhood with colonial architecture, parks, and the Museo de Arte Colonial Pedro de Osma, showcasing colonial art.