A city of great buildings, great food and great education (including the oldest, continuously functioning university in the Americas), a holiday in Lima can take on a range of forms and itineraries. But before you set foot on your Peruvian adventure there are a few basic things you should know about the city. Luckily, we've done the homework for you!
Australian passport holders do not require a visa to holiday in Peru. All visitors to Peru will be given an Andean immigration card on arrival, which must be presented prior to leaving the country. As with any international travel, ensure your passport has at least 6 months' validity from the date of return to Australia. Please be aware this information is only a guideline. For up-to-the-minute visa information, contact your local Embassy or Consulate of Peru.
The currency used in Peru is the Peruvian Nuevo Sol. The exchange rate between the Australian Dollar and Peruvian Nuevo Sol fluctuates regularly so in order to get the best exchange rate, it's a good idea to monitor it in the leadup to your trip.
If you eat just one local meal in Lima, it should be a plate of ceviche washed down with the country's national beverage, a pisco sour. With its seaside location, seafood is exceptionally fresh in Lima, which is why ceviche, a dish of raw sushi-style fish cooked using only citrus juice, is so popular. As for the pisco sour, the national Peruvian cocktail also includes equally fresh, citrus ingredients including lime juice, egg white, sugar and Angostura bitters mixed with pisco (a Peruvian brandy) - shaken, not stirred. If the idea of citrus-cooked fish doesn't quite satisfy your brave taste buds, you could always try guinea pig, listed on the menu as cuy. Potatoes also have a long association with Peru along with quinoa. Asian cuisines, particularly Chinese and Japanese, also have a long history in Peru - sample the fare at a cheap and cheerful chifa in the city.
Like most South American cities, Lima puts on a great party - it's just a shame few tourists stick around to find out. If you can spare a few nights to let loose in the Peruvian capital, head to the clubbing district of Barranco. On any night of the week, you'll find a good time here with hole-in-the-wall bars touting malt beers and pisco sours while dance clubs like Ayahuasca (yes, named for the psychoactive shamanistic brew) pump until the wee hours. Miraflores also has a nightlife scene, albeit a more swanky but LGBT-friendly one. A lot of the venues here also attract an international crowd so if you'd prefer to dance with the locals, skip the British pubs for the bars in Barranco. Also check out Malabar restaurant and bar in San Isidro where hipster locals come to play.