Our guide to Lima, Peru, with kids

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We had 2 lovely weeks in Lima. There wasn’t much we wanted to do there, but we went anyway and I’m glad we did. It didn’t have the amazing Cusco food, but it was full of stuff to see and do, our kids loved it.
Our visit was in May 2017.

We spent our days in this apartment. It’s a lovely place, the first time we had a jacuzzi. The kids were crazy about it. The apartment is huge, super well decorated, it had everything. We didn’t feel the need for anything else – which is rare – and we loved staying inside. We felt rich living there, hahahaha, and it was good for a 2 weeks thing. If it were more, we’d get spoiled. It’s well located, we could walk to restaurants and cafés, even to the beach. When we couldn’t, we took a cab.
Cabs are super cheap there, we didn’t even try to use public transport.
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Shopping

We almost always went to Vivenda supermarket because it was the closest. It’s not the cheapest one, but it has everything. On the way to the supermarket, there was a cart selling out fresh and delicious fruits and veggies. We bought them there.
Jockey Plaza is a fancy and big shopping mall there, where we went to buy something, I don’t even remember what. I think we went to the movies, but I’m not really sure. All I remember about it is that we had lunch at Hard Rock Café and it was OK, but well… these big food chains disappointed us in South America, I must say. Local food, even local food chains are A LOT better and considerably cheaper.
Larcomar is another fancy mall. We went there because we were told the views were amazing and we wanted to see it. It’s on a cliff, pretty cool view, and the sunset there was incredible, very worth it. BUT it’s all open and it was so chilly that night that we didn’t get to enjoy it or even walk around and check what it had to offer. We went there, watched the sunset, walked for around 20 minutes, and left.
Plaza San Miguel is yet another mall. We went there after we went to Parque de las Leyendas to get something to eat. It was the smallest of the malls, but we liked it better. There was something Star Wars going on and the kids had fun trying to watch it, though it was pretty hard. We ended up going to the movies there, and it was pretty full. We watched Guardians of the Galaxy there and it was pretty good. The exit, though, was messy and poorly signaled, so we ended up exiting through the emergency exit – not fun when we desperately needed the toilets.

lima peru beach sunset

This was the view from Larcomar, just a bit after sunset.

To eat

This is a bit disappointing, food in Lima was a lot more international. The local places were way too cheap and we got a bit scared. I mean, full 3-course meals for 6 Soles? I know, I’m a food snob. But I can’t help it, I get scared and I can’t eat when I’m not comfortable.
Casa del Alfajor is a cookie place. We went one evening because it was super close to the apartment and we love alfajor. The thing is, instead of the cakey thing, they use cookies. I didn’t like it. None of us liked it. It was the first time ever that we didn’t like alfajor. Plus, the lady working there wasn’t helpful, she didn’t want to tell us what the other things were, nor anything. She’d only give a one-word answer to our questions, like ‘What is this? Afajor. Is it dulce de leche? No.’. Not the best experience.
We did like Starbucks, though. It’s super close to Casa del Alfajor. The Lucuma frappuccino was delicious and they had Brazillian cheese bread.
Palettas sells paletas, of course. They’re so pretty and colorful, worth trying one. They do tend to mix stuff that doesn’t really match, but you can’t really go wrong with ice cream.
La Bodega de La Trattoria is an Italian restaurant. We had dinner there after we visited Huacla Pucllana. We wanted to eat at the restaurant there at the archeological site, but it was closed for food and it would open in 2 hours – we couldn’t wait. So we headed to the first restaurant we found and it was DELICIOUS! It’s been ages since we had good Italian food, and I’m glad we ate there. Super good.

lima centro peru

Central Lima – beautiful buildings, lots of people and noise. But it was fun.

Climate

It’s not a rainy place, and there isn’t much difference between summer and winter, except for the humidity. It was hot during the day and nice during the night. The thing is that when we visited Larcomar, it was so chilly and we were cold although we were wearing sweaters. Pretty unpredictable. It rains very little, though.
The sunny days were very hot and the cloudy days tended to be quite chilly.
Pack in layers and carry a sweater with you all the time. You just never know.

parque de la reserva lima peru

My kids watching the fountain’s color changing. It was a fun evening!

Family friendly things to do in Lima with kids

Centro Historico
The city center of almost every city we’ve been to is cool and Lima isn’t an exception. It’s beautiful, full of life, and it’s also VERY noisy. Seriously noisy. When we arrived home later that day, I felt terribly well in the almost silent home.

Parque de Las Legendas
It’s a zoo with some ruins, a small attraction park, some nice green areas, and a lot of stuff to see while there. I don’t like zoos, but the kids like it so we go sometimes. This one wasn’t the best the animals didn’t look happy, but for the cheap entry, It’s what we’d get. We went there by accident, we were trying to get to a museum beside it and ended up inside the paid park – and Coral wouldn’t leave until we’ve seen all the animals. Just to clarify, the lady at the ticket booth said that that was the entry to the museum. The toilets are filthy, there was no running water and no toilet paper, so bring your own if you’re spending a lot of time there.
There are some ruins, which are pretty cool, but I wouldn’t go back there.

parque de las leyendas lima peru

The picnic area of Parque de Las Leyendas was ok, and we could see some of the ruins from there.

Parque de La Reserva
This one was fun! It’s the magic water park – not with wet attractions, but with pretty cool water fountains. They’re all colored, and the biggest one makes the water dance with the music and displays some pretty neat images. We went there at night and it was very worth it! We should’ve taken a change of clothes to play in the water, but we didn’t. Outside of it, there are a lot of places to eat and buy souvenirs.

Huaca Pucllana
It’s an impressive site with many small areas, but it’s a guided tour. We can’t roam freely, and that’s a bit difficult with little kids. But it was pretty cool to hear about the place, the history, the culture, and all the things only guides could tell you. They offer tours in English and Spanish, and they leave every 30 minutes or so, so if you arrive after the tour has left, you’ll either have to wait for the next or catch up and accept a tour from the middle.
The pyramid is SUPER cool, and you can climb it. They also offer some night time tours, which must be fun!
There’s a tiny museum there too, but it was so full that we left it halfway through.

huacla pucclana lima peru

This is the Pyramid in Huacla Pucllana. It’s actually pretty big, a shame I didn’t capture a person there to give the perspective.

Huaca Huallamarca Pyramid
This one was left to our last day, and we did it just because we had the spare time. It was self-guided and it was so cool! The pyramid isn’t the original anymore, it was restored, and it was a bit disappointing when we found that out BUT it was interesting to climb it to the top and see how it’d have been.
The downside was that there were some guards following us, I’m pretty sure they thought we were terrorists or something.

Miraflores
Miraflores is a whole neighborhood and it’s beautiful. We went there just to walk by the beach, but it was so chilly that day that we kind of walked where we had some kind of protection from the wind. Since it’s a cliff with sea views, the upper part of it had a nice park, where we took the first photo of this post. It was super nice to walk around and watch people walking their dogs, play on the exercise areas, see people paragliding or playing with their drones. You can walk there before going to Larcomar.

huacla pucllana lima peru

OK, so turns out I did have a photo with people. This is the side of the pyramid, from where we went down.

So that was it. Our days in Lima.
Overall, Lima was one of the noisiest places we’ve ever been to. Traffic is horrible all day long. Taxis are super cheap. We’ve had no bug problems at all, nor the need for sun protection, but we didn’t really spend the whole day under the sun.
Internet was a bit better than Cusco, more stable, but still not the best.
Don’t forget toilet paper and hand sanitizer, as most toilets we’ve used didn’t have it.
We also didn’t visit any museum because we couldn’t find the one we wanted to visit and the kids have had enough history with the ruins.

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  1. […] and Viña del Mar/Valparaíso), Bolivia (La Paz and Salar de Uyuni), Peru (Cusco, Machu Picchu, and Lima), and Colombia (Bogota and Medellín). Every single one of them was great. Sure, there were places […]

  2. […] brings up mixed feelings. It’s beautiful and incredibly silent, comparing to the previous city (Lima), but it was cold and rainy. It’s also in altitude, so that explains a […]

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