Lima is fascinating in every aspect. There’s so much to see that it’s hard to figure where to start your discovery of Lima attractions. You might want to begin with taking a stroll or horse drawn carriage through Plaza Mayor. The square itself is built on an ancient Inca site. It’s home to the Museum of Religious Art and Treasures, the Governmental Palace, Town Hall, and the Archbishop’s Palace.
You can then begin your tour of museums. The most visited of the Lima attractions is the Gold Museum. Everyone loves the displays of ceremonial masks, objects and especially the tumi. This is the symbol of Peru and has made its way through the circuit of world museums. There are also a few interesting sections showing tapestries, mummies and pre-Inca weapons.
If you enjoy ceramics, you won’t want to miss the Museum Rafael Larco Herrera. It’s housed in an 18th century building boasting a majestic colonial design. It showcases 55,000 pieces of pre-Columbian clay pots especially from the Moche Dynasty. This Lima attraction has been described as the grandest collection from anywhere in the globe.
And of course, the National Museum is a must among Lima attractions. It’s here where you’ll find everything relating to Peru’s ancient civilizations. The displays feature culture and traditions of the original inhabitants to those of the Inca Empire.
Churches and Cathedrals
Lima’s churches date back to the 16th and 17th centuries. Tourists usually go to the two truly popular and unique of Lima attractions. These are the city’s cathedral and the Monastery of San Francisco. The cathedral and its surrounding fifteen churches are beyond words in terms of beauty. Don’t miss the one holding the remains of Lima’s conqueror Francisco Pizarro. You’ll want to browse through the cathedral and see the array of criss-crossing pillars, Italian marble floors, colonial arches, a sacristy and altars that will leave you bewildered.
Upon entering the Church of San Francisco, you’ll agree that it’s one of the most astonishing Lima attractions and colonial sites anywhere. Its twin towers and stone façade don’t do the interior justice. Inside is a wealth of mosaics, Moorish style ceilings and treasures. Walk through the library to see the impressive number of antique books as well as painting masterpieces by Reubens, Van Dyck and Jordaens.
If you’re into the bizarre and eerie type of Lima attractions, then don’t hesitate for a moment and visit the Tribunal of the Holy Office. You’ll more than likely get a thrill of the tunnels, secret rooms, torture chambers and underground prison used during the times of the Inquisition. And if you’ve had enough of the macabre, don’t miss the ornate ceiling of the church.
And as you learn of the history of Lima you’ll find out that Simon Bolivar is not only a hero, but the man who brought independence to Peru. His monument was constructed in 1859 and is one of the best in equestrian statuary. It’s one of the frequently photographed Lima attractions.