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Lima – A Flying Visit

sunny 33 °C

More than ten million Peruvians can’t be wrong - Lima looks like a great place to live. But, while the chilly Humbolt current can usually be relied upon to keep the locals and the lettuce from flagging, we are wilting in the mid 30 temperatures and after a fleeting visit we are flying off to the cool of the Andes to visit the ancient Incas.

The ocean-side, and very modern, city of Lima is renowned for its numerous Catholic edifices but it seems that god has not always been impressed. This monastery of San Francisco in the city centre has been destroyed four times by earthquakes since its inception in 16th century…
But the Peruvians are a persistent bunch and today the churches and cathedrals are busy gearing up for Easter with parades and special services…
This weighty silver icon was on its way into the Basilica in Lima accompanied by an oompah-band and dozens of uniformed bearers in a tradition that began in 1850.
The expansive cathedral plaza in the centre of the old city is dominated by both the Basilica and the enormous presidential palace, and surrounded by elegant colonial buildings housing some pricey lodgings and eateries…
Things may look rosy here today, but in 1990 there was an economic crises that led to the collapse of the currency and the average wage falling to less than $2 a day. However, judging by the prices of hotels and restaurants, the huge numbers of casinos and fancy shopping malls, and the fleets of BMWs and Audis on the streets, the average citizen seems to be doing pretty well. Apart from the nightmarish traffic jams, Lima’s streets and boulevards are a fashionista’s paradise…
The European influence is obvious on the street here and both men and women would look at home in Milan or Paris. There are entire malls dedicated to luxury fashion and many of the snazzier districts have upmarket boutiques and jewellery stores lining the elegant side streets, but the developers may have gone too far. One mall alone has over a thousand stores, but some of the smaller malls are blighted with empty shops and heavily discounted prices…
Fine dining is another passion with European roots and in recent years Peru has risen to the heights of haute-cuisine with its restaurants and chefs garnering international accolades. Today, Peru is one of the world’s destinations for foodies and we’ve kicked off our visit with a local favourite – Lomo Saltado accompanied by Pisco sour…
The tender chunks of fillet steak with onions, peppers and French fries, were absolutely delicious – as was the Pisco sour; an addictive cocktail made from Peruvian Muscat brandy with lime and egg white - less than $50 for two for the whole enchiladas.

Posted by Hawkson 14:51 Archived in Peru

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Your meal looks delicious, how are your tummy's holding up. You have had such a diversity of cuisines. Looking forward to your adventures in the Andes.

by Sue Fitzwilson

You really are providing an eye-opening for those of us (me)quite ignorant about the countries you've been to. Not at all what I envisioned. Gourmet dining in Peru no less. Wonderful photo of that dish btw. Mouth-watering.

by R and B

Everything looks so crisp and clean...I sure had some stereotyped concepts in my mind..thanks for the enlightenment...I needed it!

by Sharron

Another fine collection of photos. Nice to see a food shot again. Missed those. As for the high Andes, watch those pisce sours - very potent in altitude thinned blood.- still a wonderful experience.

by Tom

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