Friday — April 17
Originally, we wanted to spend our one day in Lima visiting the colonial sites in the city center. When the rest of our itinerary developed into an intensive, action-packed two weeks, we decided to use this day to just go with the flow instead. This decision was made easier by the fact that we knew we’d be planning a return trip to Perú to visit what we had to drop from our itinerary this time around.
Although we were up at our usual early hour, we were in no hurry to get anywhere. Taking our time, we prepared for an easy day of sightseeing, to be followed by a midnight flight back to the US. We already had our boarding passes in hand, so after confirming online that the schedule remained unchanged, we packed the few things we’d taken out of our bags and had them stored by the hotel staff so that we could vacate our room. By 10:00a, we were ready for a late breakfast. The “included-in-the-room-rate breakfast buffet” was not very enticing, so we headed out to the Larcomar Mall to grab a bite to eat.
Unlike the night before, Larcomar was deserted mid-morning on a Friday. The view that had been hidden by nightfall, was now veiled by the thick haze that I’ve been told is the norm in Lima this time of the year. Most of the shops were still closed, as were many of the eateries. Having noted the night before that Mangos offered breakfast, we went in to enjoy our morning meal on the cliff-top terrace. This turned out to be a mistake. Sure, the terrace views (despite the haze) were great, but service was non-existent and the food was not quite edible. Considering the crowds that were eating at Mangos last night, I can only assume that we hit the place at the wrong time.
The breakfast experience at Mangos didn’t turn out as well as expected.
View of the coast and cliffs — looking left from the Mangos terrace.
Looking right from the Mangos terrace — the pier that juts out into the Pacific is home to “La Rosa Nautica,”
a seafood restaurant that is highly recommended by guidebooks.
Leaving our food uneaten, we left Mangos and headed off on the Malecón de la Reserva, the walking path that follows the edge of the cliffs. It’s really too bad about the haze and the overall dreariness resulting from the low-lying clouds — the views all along the path would have been spectacular if we’d been graced by a clear day.
Our first stop was at Parque del Amor (Love Park; aka Lover’s Park), which was opened to the public on Valentine’s Day 1993. The most prominent feature of the park is “El Beso” (the kiss), a sculpture that depicts a couple in a passionate embrace. I was enchanted by the almost-Gaudiesque, curved, mosaic walls that surround the small property, providing private nooks for lovers of all ages to cuddle.
Parque del Amor is popular with lovers of all ages.
The sandstone sculpture is titled “El Beso.”
The mosaic wall provides private nooks where lovers can cuddle as they watch the sunset.
We were about to deviate from the walking path and head inland when our eye was caught by a lighthouse, so we decided to press on and check it out. It turns out El Faro de la Marina is a monument dedicated to the seafarers who fought in Perú’s naval battles.
El Faro de la Marina is located on top of the cliffs of Miraflores.
From the path to the lighthouse, we can see how the clouds are engulfing the apartment buildings.
The lighthouse is a monument dedicated to those who fought in Perú’s naval battles.
After determining that the lighthouse was not open to visitors, we took advantage of one of the many benches facing the ocean to rest and come up with a plan for the rest of the day. As the noon hour was nearing, we decided to combine sightseeing with a late lunch and headed off to check out a pre-Inca site about 20 minutes away.
Next Up: Day 15 — Huaca Pucllana