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If you’re considering a move to Lima, you’re probably wondering what you’ll do in your spare time. You’ll be pleasantly surprised by the range of activities and entertainment options in the Peruvian capital.

The cosmopolitan city has something to offer all tastes and interests – it just sometimes takes a bit of searching to find out about them. From some of the world’s most exciting cuisine, surfing, live music and more, here’s a quick introduction to some of the leisure activities available in Lima.

Cuisine

Lima has earned the moniker as the gastronomic capital of Latin America, and foodies will not be disappointed. There are three restaurants in San Pellegrino's list of the 50 Best Restaurants in the World, and nine in the list of 50 Best Restaurants in Latin America. From 16-course fine dining experiences to delicious traditional dishes in small family-run restaurants, the food scene will keep your taste buds happy and occupied for a long time. Be sure to sample the ceviche and delicious fresh seafood that Lima is famous for.

Nightlife

From traditional neighbourhood tavernas to swanky cocktail bars and nightclubs, Lima has a vibrant bar scene, particularly on the weekends, serving up the national favourite of pisco sour, international cocktails, and an impressive selection of local craft beers. Many bars are concentrated in Miraflores and Barranco, the latter offering many laid-back bars with live music. For a traditional taste of Peruvian nightlife, head to a peña, a dinner/show where you’ll be treated to traditional food, music, and dance with extravagant costumes and pageantry.

Festivals

Every year, the International Cajon Festival is held at the Plaza de Armas of Lima, in honour of the traditional Peruvian instrument. Musicians get together in the city-centre to share their music with locals and visitors alike.

The Ayacuchano Carnival, is held each February. It is a traditional festival held in the Rimac neighbourhood. Once celebrations are over, the festival continues with Andean dance.

There are also many modern festivals throughout the year – Mistura is now the biggest culinary festival in Latin America, usually held in October or November each year. And for art lovers, there are several art festivals such as PARC, a contemporary art show attracting international talent and collectors, Lima Fashion Week, and more.

Concerts and theatre

Lima is becoming an important stop for international talent on their tour circuit. Attracting big names like Coldplay, Ed Sheeran, and Bruno Mars, expats will not miss out on their favourite performer while living in Lima. The city has also attracted famous circuses, theatre groups and ballet troupe, ensuring a rich calendar of cultural events throughout the year.

Museums & galleries

The rich history and culture of Peru are well reflected in Lima’s museums and galleries. The Museo Larco offers an excellent display of Inca and pre-Inca artefacts, including a breath-taking display of gilded objects. The National Museum, the Natural History Museum, and the National Archeology, Anthropology, and History Museum are also worth checking out.

The art scene in Lima is vibrant and evolving, with traditional art galleries and regular exciting contemporary exhibits. Callao Monumental is a regenerative community project, showcasing the work of upcoming contemporary artists including street artists. World-renowned Peruvian fashion photographer Mario Testino also has a gallery in Barranco – a must for photography fans.

Outdoor pursuits

Even within the city, there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. Lima boasts many beautiful parks and green spaces. The Malecon, a long stretch of green cliff-top parks runs from Barranco to Miraflores and is popular with runners, walkers, and picnickers. Below the cliffs, the Pacific shore offers excellent surfing conditions. There are many surf schools offering lessons for beginners and board rental for those with more experience.

Discover Lima

The Peruvian capital city is divided into 43 districts. Each of these districts hosts at least one place of interest that’s worth discovering, including a walk along La Punta in Callao to breathe in some fresh ocean air and enjoy a seafood lunch, wander around the numerous local markets, and take in the beautiful sunset at the Maria Reiche Park. Why not visit the San Francisco catacombs in the city centre, or the impressive Pachacamac archaeological site, just to the south of the city. Regardless of your interests, there’s enough in Lima to keep you entertained in your free time.

 Useful links:

Peru Tourism Portal – What to do
Ministry of Culture
Oveja Negra – Lima leisure guide
PUCP Cultural Center
Inca Garcilaso Cultural Center
Teleticket

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