Thursday, October 25, 2012

Lima Peru

Currency Soles - $1.00 US = $2.77 Soles
Cab from Bus Depot to Downtown - $12 Soles
Hostel Downtown - $16 Soles per night
Cab Bus Depot to Mira Flores - $12 Soles
Hostel Mira Flores - $27 Soles per night
Bus Trujillo to Lima - $75.00 Soles (Night Bus)- 7 hours
Bus La Paz to Lima - $75.00 Bolivianos - 34 hours

I was in Lima twice. The first time I stayed downtown in one of the most bizarre hostels yet.

Although strange it was a very cool place. An old mansion that had been converted to a hostel. Lots of rooms and very cheap called Hotel Espana. Very old world, lots of statues and old paintings. 3 floors, the dorm room was on the top floor off the massive outdoor patio. Hard to find the door for the plants, in the picture it is where the huge foliage is. There are also a couple of birds, the little dude pretended to be friendly but once he was on your shoulder if you tried to get him off he got mean. Great little restaurant and an awesome view of the old city from the top floor. Lots of nooks, crannies and staircases to strange places. I highly recommend you give it a go if you are in Lima.

Hostel Downtown Lima
The location was awesome, only a few blocks from the presidential palace and great restaurants and bars in the area. Tons of museums and shops lots of old streets to get lost in.

On my second trip in I stayed in Mira Flores, it is the tourist district, lots of casino’s and shops including a mall built on the cliff. Ocean front so some good walking and pretty scenery. The place to stay if you want to surf. The hostel was nice, Nomade Backpackers a few dorm rooms and a kitchen, good common areas including a bit of a patio on the ground floor. Nice location a block from the water front and a 5 minute walk to the main square.

Out of the two I preferred old town but I do love the musty old stuff. I was there for mother’s day so there was a big party at the presidential palace for some select mom’s and kids. There is a heavy military presents but I think it is more for show than anything else. I spend days wandering the streets, there are some very cool areas including a china town. Almost felt like home, got a Chinese food fix in and it was really good after 3 months of not having it. I also found a very cool free museum, the oro it is in an old bank, it is all about the early civilizations including the Inca’s. What used to be the vault has been converted into a gold room, everything shiny and gold is in there, it must be worth a lot of Soles. In order to get in you do need to bring your passport and they have really odd hours but well worth the visit. Can’t explain where it is but ask a local and they will point you to it. Lots of coffee shops so I could get my latte fix, all with patios so great people watching. The San Francisco church is also worth the price of admission, you get to go into the tombs under it. Not for the very tall as the ceilings are really low. Seems those wily Franciscan monks would put people who died remains down there, tons of disassembled skeletons & bones.

San Fran Church
 Do be careful about cabs, there are some really bad taxi drivers. They will tell you a price & when you are 1/2 way there they want more money or they will ditch you on the side of the road, usually in a bad neighborhood.  Don't put anything in the trunk, that way you don't have to argue with them, just agree to pay the extra that they want and when you get out with your stuff pay them the agreed upon price & walk away

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Main Square

China Town

Main Square

Hostel Room

Hostel Roof Deck + Critters

Mira Flores

Mira Flores Shopping Center