Visiting Lima

Lima Travel Blog

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Today we had an important day as we were visiting Promperú. In the beginning we thought we were having a small meeting with some of the people working for the national tourism organization, but when we got there they told us we had 25 people in the meeting! Woohoooo! It has been awesome opportunity to get to know all of them and understand how they manage tourism in the country.

The conference was at the auditorium in a 25-story building located in the financial district (San Isidro). We ended up giving a 4 ½ hours talk about DMS (Destination Management Systems). It was fun as people were quite collaborative and many questions were raised. Right after we went to have lunch to a trendy restaurant in the area. Attaching a review of “Segundo Muelle”.

After lunch we were given a very interesting tour around the city! It is one of the biggest cities in the world counting with more than 8 million people. There is a big mixture, as you find very rich districts with very modern and big shopping malls but you also find areas where people live in shacks. The city was founded by Francisco Pizarro in 1535 and soon became one of the most prosper cities in the colony until everything change in 1746 when it was hit and devastated by an earthquake. Until 1920 it was a considered a relatively small city but everything change and started growing with people from all rural areas in Peru.

Right in the center of the city you find the “Plaza de Armas” with its Cathedral reconstructed in 1746 after the earthquake.
On its left you find the “Palacio del Arzobispo” built in 1937 and residence of the presidency. The original Cathedral was first built in 1555 but it turned to be too small for its congregation. All decoration, figures and furniture are made of wood although it looks like marble! Don’t miss Francisco Pizarro sepulture. For some reason the body was decapitated and you find the head in one plumb box! Studies prove that he was stubbed 13 times in many parts of his body. Our guide explained tons of stories about the place and showed us all 16 chapels. One of the most intriguing facts was that at the time cemeteries were right under churches and cathedrals as they were considered to be located in sacred areas with a direct connection to heaven.

But what really captured my attention was the “Monasterio de San Francisco”. This monastery and church is well known by its catacombs with are right underneath the building. They say you can find 70.000 dead people and all bones are classified and organized in different cavities. It is quite impressive when you see hundreds of skulks all together. They give you a 40-minute tour around the monastery and all guides are very well trained. To tell you the truth, I found it quite mystic and intriguing. For some moments you fell transported to its old times when people were buried there and you found all monks walking along the monastery.

Once back in the hotel, we prepared our luggage to go to Cusco!!

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photo by: rsvpme