Barranco, Lima’s bohemian neighbourhood overlooking the Pacific
April 20, 2016
The district is famous for its museums, galleries, bars, and independence-era architecture.
Home to artists, musicians, actors and intellectuals, the district is the perfect place to chill in the Peruvian capital.
In the 19th Century, Barranco was a cliff top resort, overlooking the Pacific, where many limeños (as residents of Lima are known) loved to summer. As the Peruvian capital has grown to completely surround the tiny district, Barranco has managed to hang on to its relaxed Bohemian atmosphere. Packed with bars, galleries, restaurants and hotels for all budgets, and leafy streets full of picturesque independence-era architecture, including numerous spectacular casonas, or large, palatial private homes, it is the perfect place to chill while in Lima. At night, the district really comes to life, with people coming from across the city to enjoy a drink here, including with stunning views over the Pacific Ocean.
Highlights include the new Museum of Contemporary Art (MAC by its Spanish initials), the Pedro de Osma Museum, showcasing the collection of the eponymous, late mining magnate and full of treasures from mediavel art to 20th Century Jewellery, and the Mario Testino Museum, highlighting the renowned Peruvian fashion and portrait photographer’s work with everyone from Princess Diana to colorfully-dressed Andean villagers. Watering holes include Ayahuasca, in a beautifully converted casona and the bar at Hotel B, arguably Lima’s hippest upmarket hotel.
For a walking tour, you are probably best focusing on the half-mile strip of blocks next to the Pacific Ocean, between Barranco’s main square and the boulevard of Saenz Peña (where the Peru Empire Co. is headquartered). This area is arguably Lima’s most pleasant neighborhood and just taking a morning or afternoon to stroll around is an excellent way to decompress. Keep an eye out for the district’s murals, particularly along the streets of Cajamarca and 28 de Julio.
There are also several great stores here, including Dedalo, full of highly original, high end handicrafts, accessories and objets, and Las Pallas, home to a staggering collection of traditional craftwork from across the Peruvian Andes and Amazon. You also should check out the area, beside the main square, around the Bridge of Sighs, one of Lima’s most famous landmarks, a wooden foot-bridge that young limeños head to on romantic weekend dates. Below it, you can follow the same cobbled walkway, lined by bars and restaurants, down to the beach, that 19th Century vacationers used to use.
To take a walking tour of Barranco as part of your unique, individually tailored itinerary, contact the Peru Empire Company at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +51-1-700-5100 or, if you are in the US, 347-713-7030/34.