Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Kon-Tiki Explorer - Lima, Peru

Our first overnight stop on the trip landed us in Lima, Peru. This enormous metropolis is home to over nine million people and is the third largest city in the Americas, behind São Paulo and Mexico City. Even with two days at our disposal, there was no way we'd be able to fit in all that Lima has to offer, so we focused on experiences that spoke to us.

We began our exploration in the city center where many historic palaces, religious structures, and squares are located. We toured the basilica and convent of San Fransico, which is a short walk from the Plaza Mayor. The architecture of the buildings in the area is a fascinating mix of Spanish baroque and Moorish design.

After spending our morning in the heart of the city, we traveled to the Barranco district, Lima's artistic and bohemian enclave. Art is everywhere in this part of the city and walking through the streets and the parks revealed surprises around every turn.

After a day of exercising our pedometers, we stopped in for some Pisco sours as we overlooked the ocean.

Even though we'd been enjoying our cabin on the Maasdam, we decided to take advantage of the night in Lima by booking a room at a local bed and breakfast. This decision was also strategic in that it placed us right across the street from one of the world's best restaurants, Central Restaurante!

Consistently ranked in the Top 10 restaurants of the world for the past four years, the restaurants' menu is an exploration of Peru's indigenous ingredients and each dish is a representation of one of the many ecosystems found in the country.

The meal was incredible, and I'll just let the photos speak for themselves!

After an incredible night in Barranco, we rose the next morning to an early morning encounter with some of Lima's lesser seen residents. Just off the coast of Lima lies a colony of sea lions that will happily great you if you are brave enough to take the plunge!

As we made our way to visit with these curious and furry friends we passed a structure fire, an abandoned boat, Humboldt penguins, and red crabs!

Approaching the sea lion colony was intense as you realized that the amorphous mass ahead was not lined with rocks, but swirling with moving bodies. And although it was previously never on our bucket list, swimming with sea lions quickly became one of the most enjoyable activities that we experienced on our trip!

Our next stop takes us to Paracas and the mysterious Nazca Lines!

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