It's interesting that Peru has many micro-climates around the
country, where at any given time the weather conditions can vary
drastically. This also applies to the city of Lima itself, which
is a city founded in a desert valley. The city is located along
the Pacific coast, to the west, and various small mountains (called
"cerros") near its eastern side. The ocean moisture
or breeze in the air, can cause it to feel cool or damp in the
western side of the city, while the eastern side will feel warm
and dry. For example, you may need to wear a sweater while in
the Miraflores district along the coast. Then, at the same time,
being in La Molina, at the eastern side of the city, only a short
sleeve polo would be worn due to the warmth. During the winter
months, about June to August, many days Miraflores may be cool
with some fog or mist all day, while the opposite side of the
city will be warmer and can be partly sunny. Winter in Lima, may
be like a cool March or April day across the northern U.S. or
in London without the rain, for example.
As a general guide:
closer you are to the ocean, the more breezy it is, which will
feel good on a hot day, and the more moisture there is in the
air which will feel damp on an evening during the cooler months.
-March to May can have warm days and cool nights.
-June to September would have cool days, and cool to very cool
nights. Districts along the coast (such as Miraflores, San Isidro
and San Miguel) do have a lingering morning mist, and is mostly
-October to November can have can have cool to warm days with
increasing sun, and cool nights.
-December to February would have sunny, hot days (upper 80°
's, up to the low to mid 90°), and warm nights.
- An idea of basic costs
Expenses in Peru - The following list gives
you some indication to plan for your stay in Lima.
Taxis, short trip within district- $1.00 to $1.75
Taxis, trip into adjacent district- $2.00 to $3.00
Taxis, trip across a full 2 or 3 districts- $5.00 to $6.50
*fares negotiated or charged depend on time of day, and demand.
This does not include to/from the airport.
Combi, local transport- US$0.20 to $0.70 (In soles- s/0.50 centavos
for a mile or so. Mostly combi rides are s/1.00 to s/1.50 traveling
across one to three districts. Traveling further within the city
would be s/2.00. Traveling just outside the city, such as to Pachacamac,
may be up to s/5.00 (a taxi might charge about s/30.00 to s/50.00
*a discount is given to students/universitarios.
A prefix meal/"menu" in restaurant for lunch- $2.50
A large glass of fresh juice- $1.00 to $1.50
Empanada - about $0.75
A beer in a nightclub- $1.75
A coffee in a trendy café/bar- $1.50
A pizza in a restaurant- $9.00
International phone call- about $0.15 per minute to North America
Laundry service- $1.00 per kilo (Lavanderias offer discounts-
such as 5 kilos for s/10.00)
Dry cleaning a dress shirt- $2.50
Long distance motorcoach transport- about $22.00 for up to a 12
hour trip, for example
Email-Internet service- US$0.50 to 1.50 per hour.
UPDATE- the airport DEPARTURE TAX-
is now included with the fees in the ticket cost. It is no longer
paid separately at the airport.
internationally known fitness center "Gold's Gym"
has many locations throughout Lima. The most convenient for
travelers are the locations of San Miguel or Miraflores.
location nearest the airport is about ten minutes south of Avenida
Elmer Faucett, about two blocks west of Avenida La Marina in
San Miguel district. If you have a long layover of at least
a few hours, it is possible to swing by and work off some stress
and airplane food. (Av. Faucett is the highway that borders
the airport entrance/exit.
Address: Centro Comercial Shopping Center San Miguel, Av. Prolongación
La Mar 2275 San Miguel. Tel. 452-4554
are: Monday to Friday 6:00 am to 11:00 pm. Saturday 7:00 am
to 6:00 pm. Sunday and holidays 8:00 am to 3:00 pm.
Miraflores location near the Parque Kennedy, is close to many
of the hotels, shops, casinos and restaurants that are frequented
by the majority of visitors to Peru. It is about two blocks
west on Av. Larco, from the Parque Kennedy.
Address: Centro Comercial Expo, Av. Benavides 347, second level,
Miraflores. Tel. 447-4200
Hours are: Monday to Friday 6:00 am to 11:00 pm. Saturday 7:00
am to 5:00 pm. Sunday and holidays 8:00 am to 3:00 pm.
Gold's Gym offers you a one day entrance, or a temporary pass,
such as for 30 days. Their fees are nominal, and may be a little
more than the average gym in Lima, which might not have the
amenities of Gold's...such as showers and sauna. This will give
you an orientation to the facility with use of the locker room
and sauna (schedule permiting). Also included is use of the
machines, and classes that may be scheduled, such as: pilates,
yoga, dance, Tai Bo, steps and spinning or cycling, and others.
Register for the class, at least 30 minutes beforehand.
You can find detail schedules of classes on their website: GoldsGymPeru.com
& Holy Days
(a partial list)
January - Lima week. Ceremonies and festivals commemorating the
anniversary of the foundation of Lima, on January 18, 1535.
March - last week of the month there is a wine harvest festival
in Surco, with activities hosted by the mayor and elected Queen.
March or April - Holy week before Easter called "Semana Santa,"
with processions through the streets remembering the passion of
Christ, very reaffirming to be among the masses that come to watch.
May- the third week, the national Peruvian Gait Horse contest,
in the village of Mamacona very near the ruins of Pachacamac.
It is fascinating to watch the unique style of pace of this breed,
trained in Peru.
July 28th (and 29th)- Independence Day. Exhibitions and fairs
in various districts, school parades and a large military parade
in the city. There are races at the Monterrico Hippodrome, and
an international music festival in La Molina.
July- the last week of July there is a national crafts "artesania"
festival held in Lima, at the Museo De La Nacion along Av. Javier
Prado in San Borja. Producers of handmade items of all kinds come
from around the country to exhibit their products and skills.
August - during the fourth week there are surfing competitions
at the coastal town of Cañete, 147 kms. south of Lima.
August 30th - Festival of Santa Rosa, the first South American
October - The month of Señor de los Milagros "Our Lord of
Miracles," the patron Saint of Lima. A very unique procession
takes place on the 18th, 19th and 28th of the month, as a very
large painting of the Lord is taken out of a church and carried
through the streets by dozens of the faithful and followed by
many more. It was painted in 1650 and has miraculously survived
destruction various times, escaping fire and a church collapse.
The protected existence of this painting of Christ adds to the
devotion and spirit of this holy event. The painting is framed
in solid gold and silver, making its cart very heavy for the devotees
to carry. Again, it is very moving to among the faithful to watch
October into mid-November- The bullfighting season begins during
the end of October, held at the 200 year old Plaza de Acho in
the Rimac district, where it is best to travel with others.
Tips & Phrases
**Tip: When greeting a female or being greeted by a female, the
norm is to include a light kiss on the cheek. And again upon departing,
as part of saying goodbye.
Hello! - "Hola!" - it will give a good impression if
you would say Hola to anyone you make eye contact with, even in
or mame - Señora (sen-your-uh).
**Anytime you see the " ñ ", the pronounce the "n"
with a "y" sound.
Mr. or sir - Señor
Tomorrow - Mañana
Morning- "Buenos dias"
Good Afternoon- "Buenas tardes"
Good Evening/Night- "Buenas noches" (also used as a
Good Bye if at night)
Nice to meet you- "Un placer encontrarse" - Placer (pleasure)
is promounced "Plas-air."
Pleased to meet you- "Mucho gusto" which is a shortened
spanish version of- it pleases you to meet or pleasure to meet.
My name is ___ - "Me llamo ___ " (double LL is always
a "Y" sound) - Llamo is pronounced as "Ya-mo"
My- "mi," as in your possession
Me- if you used in a sentence in reference to you, "me"
"Usted" for a formal conversation with a stranger, recent
acquaintance, older person or to show respect.
You- "Tu" as an informal use with a friend, relative
You all- "Ustedes" when communicating to more than one
How are you? - "Como esta?" as a formal use.
How are you? - "Como estas?" as an informal use.
How are you all? - "Como estan?" for more than one person.
Please- "Por Favor"
Right now- "Ahorita"
One person- "una persona," personas
People- "gente" (hen-tay)
Where is the bathroom? - "Donde está el baño"
- Baño is pronounced "Ban-yo"
Where is a doctor? - "Donde está un medico?"
I need help- "Necesito ayuda"
I need a drink- "Necesito una bebida" (water- "agua"
I am sick- "Estoy enfermo", he/she is sick "Está
Urgent- "Urgente" - pronounced "ur-hen-tay"
Call the police- "Llama la policia" - LL is a Y sound-
- Dolares (most all pricing will be in Soles (s/. _)
Exchange money - "el cambio" or "casa de cambio",
How much is the exchange rate?- "Cuanto es el cambio?"
I would like __ - "Me gustaría ____" .
We would like - "Nos gustaría __"
How much does it cost? - mostly used is "Cuanto sale?".
or less used is "Cuanto cuesta"
I would like to go ___ - "Me gustaría ir ____"
. (to the cinema- "al cine")
We can meet there- "Podemos encontrarnos alla"
Here- "aca" or "aqui" ("a-kah" or
Do you pass by __ - "Pasa por ____ " . Example- Do you
pass by Av. Javier Prado?-" Pasa por Javier Prado".
How much do you charge? - "Cuanto cobra?"
How much would you charge- "Cuanto cobraria?"
"Adios", "Chau" (chow), "Saludos"
(health or salute)
See you later- "Hasta Luego"
Take care of yourself- Formal is "Cuidase" like "qui-da-say"
or "Cuidate" for informal.
Take care of yourselves- "Cuidense" as "qui-den-say"
all goes well! or have a good time- "Que se vaya bien"
for formal use. "Que te vaya bien" for informal use.
Pronounced - "kay say bye-yuh be-en" or "kay tay
bye-yuh be-en." The word "se" is a formal reference
used in conjunction with a verb in reference to "you,"
for someone you do not know or just met or to show respect. "Te"
is used in conjunction with a verb that refers to "you"
informal for a friend or relative or youngster.
Info & Tips
Airport Departure Tax- **UPDATE - this tax is now included
in the purchase of a ticket. No longer will passengers have to
pay separately at the airport. (12/2010)
Most stores are open from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm, except that panaderias
open very early. Office hours are normally until 6pm with a half
day on Saturday. Lunch time in Lima is at 1pm. (not noon). Businesses
and doctors offices may take a lunch break between 1:00 pm and
3::00 pm. Generally, banks are open in the morning from 9 am to
1:00 and from 4:30 to 6:00 pm. However, banks have branches in
supermarkets that are open to 9pm most every day. (Reminder, do
not use a ATM on the street or where
others are watching. Look around at who may be there.)
Carrying of Documents on Your Person- It is advised
to Leave your original passport in your hotel or on the cruise
ship. This is the safest, to guard against loss or theft. Make
a photocopy of the passport, and carry that copy with you. You
can also carry your drivers license as a backup ID. in case needed.
It is highly unlikely that you are going to have to show your
ID or be stopped by Police, unless involved in an accident or
some suspicious behavior, which the original can easily be obtained
Free Samples! Stores in Lima that make their
own ice cream and sorbets are called "heladerias" who
sell their own flavors and/or those of a larger manufacturer.
Ice cream is "helado" and sorbet is known as "helado
natural." Either way, most all of the heladerias offer you
free sampling of any flavor you would like to try. There are some
flavors that you will recognize and many that will be new to you.
They are delicious!!
friendly! Say "Hola" or "Buenos dias"
to everyone you make eye contact with. You will leave a good impression
on others, and make you feel good at the same time. Always say
"please" ("Por favor") and "thank you" (" gra-cias") for anything,
to anyone. Peruvian people tend to be polite and mannerly; good
manners will win the approval of those around you. Sometimes it
can sound rude if somebody calls you and you answer with just
a "uh?"--the proper response being Mame? "¿Señora?" or Sir? "¿Señor?",
depending on who's calling you. ("ñ" sounds like an
"n-y" combination as in- sen-yur-a)
These tips will help if you'd like to fit into the culture, and
attract less attention as a tourist. The locals do not wear sunglasses,
shorts, waist or gunny sacks, or flip-flops. And the average local
is not wearing jeans. Those are distinct signs of a tourist. It's
normally kids, teens that can be seem wearing shorts, unless during
sports or fitness activities. The local men do wear long pants
even in warm weather (standard pants are cotton twills, chino
type). The men and boys do wear baseball-type hats all year.
Electricity- 220 volts, 60 cycles. Always
good to take a small flashlight.
Say No, Without Speaking
- When approached by vendors or others trying to solicit a sale,
say "no" without speaking. Shake you head or your
index finger to indicate "no." Because, the second
you open your mouth, it will be obvious that you are a foreignor
and may encourage further solicitation. DO NOT GIVE MONEY TO KIDS,
this just encourages a very bad practice. If you feel as though
you'd like to help, it might be a better idea to offer something
like an empanada and a milk or yogurt from a local panaderia (bakery)
or bodega (neighborhood store).
Do not be an oblivious tourist. BE AWARE of yourself and your
surroundings. For example, do not talk overly loud in public
places (as in obnoxious), do not flaunt money or wear flashy
jewelry or watches that are going to attract attention and perhaps
a theft or other problem for you or your group. Keep wallets in
your front pocket to deter pickpocketing. Carry a photo-copy of
your passport, not the original. Do not leave money and passports
lay around openly in your room. As in any large city, it is always
good to walk with others, especially towards evening.
Toilets TP- Peruvian toilets rarely have
toilet paper, except the better restaurants. It is best to take
your own around with you, perhaps a partial roll, especially if
traveling outside the city. Do Not put paper down the toilet as
it might cause a block. First, look to see if there is a small
receptacle next to the toilet, even in the houses, and these are
No need to be alarmed or afraid. This is just another bit of good
information, just as is first aid. For those who may not know
about building fires or earth tremors, we include this as a basic
guide in case it should be helpful in a traveler's future, in
any country. First, and once again, Be Aware of your surroundings,
especially where you are staying and what may give the best cover
or quickest exit. You should do this everywhere you travel.
can occur at any time. Once at your place of lodging, be aware
of the quickest exit and a secondary exit. Check for a location
of fire extinguishers, perhaps in the hallway or kitchen cabinet.
If awakened by fire or thick smoke, crawl on the floor to the
exit as this is where the air will contain less smoke.
Tremors usually begin with a noise sounding like a tractor trailer
is passing by with minor vibration, and can become louder. This
is the time to move to a reinforced or secure area, not to wait
to see if it will end. There might be up to a few seconds before
the main part of the vibrations arrive. As
you walk through buildings, you will see a square sign with a
large letter symbol, posted on an upper part of a column or wall.
The symbol is designating that area as a place for cover, based
on it being a load bearing, reinforced point of the structure.
These might be in the hallways and lobbies of hotels and hostals,
and any other public space of buildings, which most have been
constructed or retrofitted to better withstand tremors.
If you are inside, move to the designated area of the posted symbol.
If a quicker alternative is needed, the doorway is an alternative
if it is on a load-bearing, permanent wall, away from windows.
If not, look for a sturdy table or counter. Do not use revolving
doors or elevators ("sen-sor"). Use your arms to shield
your face and back of neck. Afterwards, turn off the stove or
heater gas if you smell a leak. Do the same for any aftershocks.
you happen to be outside, move to an open area away from power
lines, trees, buildings and windows.
Life is an adventure, so
too is travel.
Get out there and live!
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