Lima is most well known for the increasing number of culinary awards over the past decade, as well as the entry/exit point for most tourists visiting Peru. While many people skip over it to get strait to Cuzco, Lima is definitely worth spending at least a week in to see what sets it apart from other South American capitals. Being able to eat at more of Lima's many restaurants is a major bonus.

Best Places to Visit

If you're only in Lima for a few days, here's a list of the places I found the most unique or well done in Lima and worth considering when planning your trip.

Larco Museum

This is the most memorable of the museums I visited in Peru and has the best displayed and largest collection of prehispanic art and artifacts from around the country. The grounds have a beautiful courtyard with a restaurant worth visiting if you're there during lunch hours.

Larco Museum · frente al, Parque Larco, Av. Simón Bolivar 1515 Ingreso por, Navarra 169, Pueblo Libre 15084, Peru
★★★★★ · Archaeological museum
Cafe Museo Larco · frente al, Parque Larco, Avenida Simón Bolivar 1515 Ingreso por, Navarra 169, Pueblo Libre 15084, Peru
★★★★★ · Restaurant

Lima Museum of Contemporary Art

MAC is Lima's main modern art museum, near the start of Barranco, and worth a visit if you like contemporary art or just to walk around the exterior.

Lima Museum of Contemporary Art · Av. Almte. Miguel Grau 1511, Barranco 15063, Peru
★★★★☆ · Art museum

Museo Jade Rivera

Street muralist turned contemporary artist, this museum is in the heart of Barranco now, which makes it easier for people to appreciate the artist's work.

Museo Jade Rivera · Av. Sáenz Peña 205, Barranco 15063, Peru
★★★★★ · Museum

Malecón de Miraflores

Malecón de Miraflores · Mal. de la Reserva 275, Miraflores 15074, Peru
★★★★★ · Tourist attraction

Worth a walk on a sunny or even cloudy day, starting from the Miraflores Chinese Park (Parque Chino de Miraflores) southeast along the coast to Barranco. Stop by Restaurante La Rosa Náutica for a drink and the view, although food wasn't worth the prices. The nice part of the boardwalk ends near Cala restaurant in Barranco, which has better food although the view is not as nice.  

Museo de Arte de Lima

The main art museum in Lima, housing a variety of art and pieces from the prehispanic to the modern age. The park the museum is inside(Park of the Exposition or Parque de la Exposición) is worth a stroll through before or after the museum, particularly to see the Pabellon Morisco.

Museo de Arte de Lima · Parque de la Exposición, Av. 9 de Diciembre 125, Lima 15046, Peru
★★★★★ · Art museum

National Museum of Peruvian Culture ( Museo Nacional de la Cultura Peruana )

Museum dedicated to folk/popular art from various periods of Peruvian history, well worth a visit despite the shabby building interior.

National Museum of Peruvian Culture · Av. Alfonso Ugarte 650, Lima 15082, Peru
★★★★☆ · Museum


This was a surprise gem of a museum in Lima. Housed in a stunning historic mansion, it contains a surprisingly wide variety of minerals presented well along with some assorted artifacts. After visiting this museum, make sure to take a quick stroll through St Martin Square to check out the plaza, architecture and statues.

MUSEO ANDRES DEL CASTILLO · Jirón de la Unión 1030, Lima 1, Peru
★★★★★ · Cultural center

PLAM (Palacio de las Artes de Miraflores)

Free museum in Miraflores housed in an old government palace, worth a walk through.

PLAM (Palacio de las Artes de Miraflores) · VXHC+875, Av. José Larco, Miraflores 15074, Peru
★★★★☆ · Museum


Dédalo · Jirón Sáenz Peña 295, Barranco 15063, Peru
★★★★★ · Art gallery

Just next to the Jade Rivera museum, this is a souvenir/art store with a nice interior courtyard that has a cafe.

Brisas del Titicaca Asociación Cultural

This cultural association runs lunch and dinner shows that showcase classic and Peruvian dances from the Lake Titicaca region of the country. Expect a Hispanic wedding vibe with pretty good home style food choices, a joke-cracking MC and families that go out to dance to more "modern-classic" songs in between shows.

Brisas del Titicaca Asociación Cultural · Heroes de Tarapacá 168, Lima 15046, Peru
★★★★★ · Peruvian restaurant

Galeria de Artes Visuales

Free art and design museum in Miraflores, well worth a visit if you're nearby.

Galeria de Artes Visuales · Av. Arequipa 5198, Miraflores 15074, Peru
★★★★★ · Museum

Historic Center of Lima (Centro Histórico)

If you're in the area, might as well stop for an hour and look at the Plaza de Armas  which includes the Cathedral of Lima and Government Palace of Peru( Palacio de Gobierno de la República del Perú). There's a few ex-convents nearby like the Basílica and Convent of San Francisco(Convento de San Francisco) and Basilica and Convent of Santo Domingo(Convento de Santo Domingo) if you're into old churches. The Museo Central (MUCEN) is small but free so worth popping in to see the current exhibit.  The rest of the area is a bit dodgy and run-down though, so try to stay within a few blocks of the main plaza if you want to wander around.

Lima Main Square · Jr. Junín cdra. 1, Lima 15001, Peru
★★★★★ · Historical landmark

Best Places to Eat and Drink

*** Astrid y Gastón

This was my favorite restaurant in Lima, set in a renovated mansion with bright airy decoration. They have a rather large menu and everything I tried was excellent, as were the cocktails. Also the best service among the many restaurants I visited. Reservations essential.

Astrid y Gastón · Av. Paz Soldán 290, San Isidro 15073, Peru
★★★★★ · Peruvian restaurant

*** Mayta Restaurante

My second favorite restaurant in Lima with a warm, inviting dining space, solid service, and menu filled with delicious dishes and cocktails. Reservations essential.

Mayta Restaurante · Av. Mariscal La Mar 1285, Miraflores 15027, Peru
★★★★★ · Restaurant

*** Maido

This is consistently in the top 3 for Lima, and with good reason. Excellent attention and service from the waitstaff, and every dish I tried was well executed and delicious. Their cocktail program also excels and should be sampled. Reservations are essential unless you come in at a very off hour.

Maido · Ca. San Martín No. 399, Miraflores 15074, Peru
★★★★★ · Peruvian restaurant

** Cosme Restaurante y Bar

Cosme is a trendy restaurant with a bit of a hipster vibe serving modern global dishes meant for sharing. While not as pricey or as reserved in advance compared to other highly rated restaurants in the area,  reservations are recommended.

Cosme Restaurante y Bar · Av. Tudela y Varela 162, San Isidro 15073, Peru
★★★★★ · Nuevo Latino restaurant

** Matria Restaurante

A more casual, trendy restaurant compared to the other heavy-hitters nearby, this place specializes in elevated Comida Criolla dishes.

MATRIA RESTAURANTE · Av. Gral. Mendiburu 823, Lima 15074, Peru
★★★★★ · Peruvian restaurant

** Sastrería Martinez, Bar oculto

Worth reserving and visiting for a proper speakeasy experience. They offer a large menu of drinks, although they weren't all outstanding, and some small plates which were pretty good.

Sastrería Martinez, Bar oculto · Av. Mariscal La Mar 1263, Miraflores 15074, Peru
★★★★★ · Bar

* Restaurant Huaca Pucllana

Just next to the main entrance to the Huaca Pucllana archaeological site (which isn't really worth entering), this restaurant is very much worth entering. You have a nice view of part of the site, and hearty well-seasones typical Peruvian dishes. The anticuchos were some of the best I had over the two months I was in Peru.

Restaurant Huaca Pucllana · Ca. Gral. Borgoño Nº860, Lima 15074, Peru
★★★★★ · Peruvian restaurant

Restaurante Contraste Lima

Small plates, most rather good with some flaws that keep them from being excellent, worth a visit if you're nearby and like the current menu offerings.

Restaurante Contraste Lima · Av. la Paz 604, Miraflores 15047, Peru
★★★★★ · Restaurant

Huambra - Cocina Amazónica

Serving cuisine from the Amazonian regions of Peru and in the heart of Miraflores.

Huambra - Cocina Amazónica · Calle Porta 135, Miraflores 15074, Peru
★★★★★ · Restaurant

Fiesta Restaurant

One of the top-rated restaurants in Lima, I didn't feel it was worth such a high rating, but some of the dishes were pretty good.

Fiesta Restaurant · Av. Reducto 1276, Miraflores 15074, Peru
★★★★★ · Restaurant

Rutina Café

Casual spot with locally and globally inspired dishes. Their empanadas were excellent.

Rutina Café · Av Grau 400, Miraflores 15074, Peru
★★★★★ · Cafeteria


Tantan Ramen at Kaikan

The second best bowl of ramen I had in Lima.

Kaikan · Av. Sta. Cruz 825, Miraflores 15073, Peru
★★★★★ · Japanese restaurant

Madam Tusan

If you've had enough of Peruvian Chaufa (which is very similar to American style Chinese takeout) and are craving more authentic Cantonese style Chinese, Madame Tusan does a pretty good job.

Madam Tusan · Av. Sta. Cruz 859, Miraflores 15074, Peru
★★★★☆ · Chinese restaurant

Highly Rated Places On My List For Next Time


Central · Av. Pedro de Osma 301, Barranco 15063, Peru
★★★★★ · Restaurant

Central is the top rated restaurant in Lima, only serves a tasting menu and requires reservation far in advance of your planned visit. They also focus on seafood and are quite pricey, which is why I didn't even try to get a reservation, but for foodies this is always near the top of the list for Lima.


Kjolle · Av. Pedro de Osma 301, Barranco 15063, Peru
★★★★★ · Restaurant


Isolina · Av. San Martín 101, Lima 15063, Peru
★★★★★ · Restaurant

One of the most famous for comida criolla served in large portions for sharing. I ordered a dish via delivery from here and liked it, but never had a chance to visit the restaurant.

La Picantería

La Picantería · Sta. Rosa 388, Surquillo 15047, Peru
★★★★★ · Peruvian restaurant

This is the other famous comida criolla restaurant in Lima, with dishes typical of Arequipa.

Osaka Pardo y Aliaga

Osaka Pardo y Aliaga · Felipe, Av. Pardo y Aliaga 660, San Isidro 15073, Peru
★★★★★ · Restaurant

Museo Oro del Perú y Armas del Mundo

Museo Oro del Perú y Armas del Mundo · Jr. Alonso de Molina 1100, Santiago de Surco 15023, Peru
★★★★☆ · Museum


A bit removed from central Lima, and famous for being dangerous, the very tip of Callao is upscale and has security which makes for a pleasant walk with ocean views. The immediate fort and Callao monumental areas are also safe, but don't venture any further into the rest of Callao as a tourist.

Malecón Pardo La Punta - Callao

Malecón Pardo La Punta - Callao · La Punta 07021, Peru
★★★★★ · Tourist attraction

Fortaleza del Real Felipe - Callao

Fortaleza del Real Felipe · Plaza Independencia, Callao 07021, Peru
★★★★★ · Fortress

Callao Monumental turismo histórico

Callao Monumental turismo histórico · Constitucion 250, Callao 07021, Peru
★★★★★ · Cultural center