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September 14, 2012

We had no intention of visiting Lima. We had been told that it wasn’t that interesting and nowhere near as nice as Quito. We initially drove straight through heading for the South but events with our window conspired to put is in Lima again.

As it was late afternoon when we finished at Miyasato we decided to spend the night in Lima so we headed for the Hitchiker’s Hostel, pretty much the only place to stay in the city for overlanders. This is situated in the upscale, and very safe, neighbourhood of Miraflores.  Miraflores feels a lot like a European city with lots of restaurants, boutique food shops and upmarket clothes shops.

The real down side of Lima though is the weather.  The average day seems to be overcast – grey with a twinge of brown – and cold. Think London but greyer and smogier !

In the morning we thought we might as well visit the Historic centre of Lima and we hopped on a bus to get there. When we arrived we found that there was a cultural parade of dancers from all the various areas of Peru taking place. Its amazing for a catholic country how tarty some of the women’s costumes can be.

After seeing all the performers in the parade we walked around the centre of Lima, the area with the colonial building is pretty small and then headed back to  Miraflores.

Not too far from our hostel there is a big, modern shopping complex on overlooking the sea called Larcomar. We visited this and indulged ourselves in a visit to the cinema there. We were delighted to find out that they were showing Batman in English ! I also finally managed to find a pair of hiking shoes to fit after searching in every Peruvian town we’d been in – size 11 is considered absurd in most of Peru.

The last thing that we did in Lima was visit the Huaca Pucllana. This is a large Adobe temple that was built by the Lima civilization, one of the many pre-Inca civilizations in Peru. It is right in the middle of the Miraflores district of the city, surrounded by houses. The entry fee includes a guided tour and again we were lucky that an English language tour was starting just as we arrived.

The pyramid itself has been extensively rebuilt using the original adobe bricks. Only around half of the massive pyramid has been excavated however.

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