I cannot believe it has been over a month since we came back from Peru. Even though I dedicated a post to our time in the Peruvian rainforest, I also wanted to share a few details with you about our time in Lima.
If you ever plan on visiting Machu Picchu, most likely you will spend some time in Lima. At close to 9 million people, this is not a small city. And they have insane traffic to prove it. Despite its size, there are 3 main districts where most of your stops will be: 1) Barranco, 2) Miraflores and 3) San Isidro, which are all adjacent to each other.
One of the things I enjoy about visiting Lima is seeing all of the amazing handiwork and designs for the home. There are a few really cool shops that are hidden among all the chain and department stores (which are not worth visiting). Luckily, my aunt Pierina knows my taste and takes me to these special spots.
A few cool shops
Dedalo Arte y Artesania – My absolute favorite. Located in Barranco, Dedalo is part art gallery, part store and cafe. Talented contemporary artists and artisans display their wares in this deceivingly large home turned store. You will find everything from jewelry, dinnerware, fashion, and home accessories in here.
Petit Thouars Market – This massive market in Miraflores is filled with more traditional handicrafts. If you want to pick up something that says, “I just came back from Peru”, this is where you want to go. The vendors sell beautiful alpaca shawls, ceramics and silver pieces. Some with more quality than other. You can also bargain a bit here – not something I enjoy doing.
Indigo Gallery – This store is very similar to Dedalo in that it is filled with contemporary artist pieces. Formerly a house, walking through it is like walking through a museum where you can (kind of) afford to buy the pieces. There was also another beautiful shop right across the street from Indigo owned by the same person, but I cannot remember the name. You’ll see it if you go to Indigo though.
Most likely, if you are heading to Peru, it’s to visit Machu Picchu, and not Lima. However, there is one BIG reason why you will want to schedule at least 2 or 3 nights in Lima on your way to or from Cusco. The unparalleled food scene. You could spend a month eating your way through this city and not hit all the incredible restaurants and cafes. Regardless if you go casual or upscale, I guarantee you will have some memorable meals when you go. Below are some of the highlights from our last visit.
Where we ate:
Gelateria Blu – Amazingly delicious gelato shop in the Barranco district featuring creative and super fresh flavors. Even if my cousin didn’t co-own this place I would have been all over it. They pride themselves on sourcing the freshest and most local ingredients possible for their gelato. If you are in Lima, you have to stop here.
Hotel B Restaurant – My aunt took me to this restaurant because the hotel is just really cool. Situated in the heart of the Bohemian Barranco district, Hotel B was formerly a residence which has now been transformed into a luxury hotel. You don’t have to stay here to soak in the decor and contemporary art. Just come enjoy a meal here. The food was delicious, but the atmosphere was even better.
Cafe de Lima – Loved this casual bistro with indoor and outdoor seating. The food was not pretentious but it was so good. I ordered a salad and a fresh squeezed juice, but then I saw the table next to us get some really good looking open faced toasts, so I added them to my order. Glad I did because they were super yum.
Mo Cafe & Bistro – With a focus on sustainable, nutritious and innovative food, Mo Cafe was such a surprise. If you didn’t know where you were, you would assume you were in San Francisco with a menu like this. I would totally come back here in a heartbeat.
Puku Puku Cafe – This cafe has two locations I believe. We went to the one in Miraflores – two or three times! The coffee is made from small batch Peruvian beans. You can really tell the difference. Plus the boys liked their sandwiches.
La Sanahoria – Okay, this is not actually a restaurant. But I could totally make a meal out of all the goodies at La Sanahoria. It’s a health food store with the vibe of a hip boutique. We went to the one in Barranco. I could have browsed forever, but my dad was rushing me to be quick. I picked up some yummy roasted Brazil nuts for my flight, plus a bag of aji amarillo which I am still using in my soups. They also had a tempting array of organic dark chocolates and an espresso bar. I will be coming back here for sure.
El Pez Amigo – You cannot leave Lima without experiencing their unparalleled ceviche. I am not going to tell you this is the only place to get amazing ceviche in Lima because it’s not. Amazing ceviche is available all over the place. But if you want to experience the the variety of incredible seafood Lima has to offer, you will want to hit up El Pez Amigo in Miraflores.
During our time in Lima, we stayed with my aunt Pierina. She lives in an apartment in the Miraflores district. Her place is in walking distance of everything – her gym, coffee shops, and excellent restaurants. I snapped a few pictures of the living area and patio of her apartment right before I left so I could show you her place and eclectic decor.
Pierina inherited a lot of my late grandfather’s antique furniture, which she loves. But she is also a big fan and avid supporter of contemporary art as well as primitive art. I think she mixes all three seamlessly in her space.
Isn’t Pierina’s urban home so personal and inviting? We certainly love staying here. Thank you for being such a generous hostess, Pierina! Next time we will continue to work on some styling projects together 😉