The following article contains some interesting and useful information about Lima, the capital of Peru.
Lima is a very large, diverse, and interesting city located on the Pacific coast of Peru. The city of Lima has almost 10 million residents, about one third of Peru’s population, and is the 16th largest city in the world. The area was inhabited long before the founding of the city. There are numerous sites in what is now Lima that were built by pre-Columbian peoples who lived in the area, including Pachacamac. The area eventually came under the rule of the Inca Empire.
The city of Lima was founded in 1535 by Francisco Pizarro, and was named Ciudad de los Reyes, meaning City of Kings. The oldest university in the Americas, the National University of San Marcos, was founded in Lima in 1551. During colonial times, Lima was the capital of almost all of Spanish South America, and was the wealthiest city in the New World for many years. Many beautiful colonial buildings are located in Lima.
Lima is a very diverse city. Originally inhabited by indigenous peoples, many people came from Spain during colonial times, bringing with them African slaves, and often intermarrying with the native peoples. After Peru’s independence from Spain, many people immigrated from other parts of Europe and from Asia. Many immigrants arrived in Lima from Italy, Germany, France, Britain, Croatia, China and Japan. Also, large numbers of people have moved to Lima from rural areas in the Andes Mountains. Today Lima’s population is about 70% Mestizo (mixed European and indigenous Indian), 15% White, 10% Amerindian, and 5% Asian and Black.
As a result of this diversity, Lima also has a unique and varied cuisine, earning it the name “The Gastronomical Capital of the Americas”. Chifa, or Chinese-Peruvian food, is very popular and Chifa restaurants can be found on nearly every street all over the city. Pollo a la Brasa, invented in Lima by a Swiss immigrant, is another one of the most popular foods in the city. Ceviche is popular as well, and many other kinds of food can be found in Lima, but we will not go on listing all the different foods in Lima since it would take many more pages to do it.
There are many interesting tours in Lima, including the tour of the ruins of Pachacamac, tour of the Palomino Islands where you can swim with sea lions, tours to the many museums such as Larco Herrera or the Gold Museum, or sightseeing at the colonial buildings, and much more.
Many people stop in Lima on their way to Cuzco/Machu Picchu, and we invite you to see our Lima Tours for more useful and interesting information about Lima and what to do there.