So much familiar,
so much new..
Lima is an interesting city. It's on the coast, but with desert all around beyond the nearby mountains which keep it in the same sort of temperature inversion layer that you see in Los Angeles, or Chiang Mai, or many other cities. Ocean fog, smog.. gray, gray skies. They've forbidden the put-put scooters or tuk-tuk taxis you see elsewhere in Peru and all over the world. They've painted the stucco buildings bright colors. But it's still grey.
The climate is temperate and there are many restaurants with outdoor terraces (and great ceviche), many plantings of bouganvillias and blue-lilies-of-the-nile and palm trees, as you'd see in L.A. And on the bluffs overlooking the coast and the coast highway, morning-glories are planted to prevent further erosion, with the highway below looking like the road to Malibu!
And there's also the colonial-era overlay: 17th Century buildings that look more like they belong in St. Petersburg, baroque and colorful, or Madrid, and there are elaborate, European-looking churches. If you aren't interested in the colonial aspects, there's always the pre-Columbian museums, and folklore dancing to see.
Being zoo docents, we asked to go to the zoo, which was quite good, sticking to native animals - it's the only place we saw a jaguar, or a tapir, or many varieties of birds. And being party animals, we all went to the magnificently-sited Rosa Nautica (Compass Rose) restaurant for dinner.