Plaza Mayor And Surroundings, Lima
There is a lot of police and military presence here. I saw a big weird looking truck with a thing that looked like a nozzle on it. Me to armed guard standing by truck: "Para Fuego?" Armed Guard: "No, ... is for.. how you say?... the people". So the moral of this story is: if you ever find yourself in Plaza Mayor during a riot, be prepared to get wet.
The XVI Century Plaza de Armas is probably the best place to start your visit to Lima.
There you will find the Cathedral and the Archbishop´s Palace next to each other, the Government Palace and many other beautiful colonial buildings that earned Lima´s historical city center the deserved title of Unesco World Heritage Site.
You don't really notice how pretty it is until you look back and notice the modern meets neoclassic arched glass ceiling. There's also a postage museum, but we didn't go in. The souvenier stands that line the back are a little different from the other ones around Plaza Mayor -- I got a kitschy pack of postcards showing traditional Peruvian fashions as 50's-esque illustrations.
There were so many balconies, that "limeños" never thought of them as being unique. Lima was simply considered "the city of the balconies"
In the viceroyship, the noble and wealthy Spanish families who settle in Lima built mansions very similar in architecture to the Arab-moresque style of spain
Among the custom of these inmigrants, it was considered inappropiate that their women go out of doors, that is the reason why the balconies, ladies of Lima´s high society to observe what ocurred in the street without having to go outside. But if women went outside street they must to hide or cover the face, "tapar" the face, so they call them "las tapadas"
Take the balconies tour, bacause has been declared that balconies were for Lima as was the Eiffel tower to Paris, the Statue of Liberty for New York and the Lions in Trafalgar Square for London
This is the main square in Lima and the centre of the old town. It is always busy, with people coming and going and often parades, demonstrations... 140 square meters.
Around it you will find:
- The Cathedral
- Archibishop Palace
- Government Palace
- Pizarro statue
Every morning after my breakfast i walked to Plaza Mayor. Every morning it was misty and it felt like it would begin to rain. It never did though. Around noon the sun was shining and it was nice and warm. Plaza Mayor is surrounded by beautiful and interesting buildings and is real heart of the city. Vendors come to you and try to sell their stuff but they are never too persistant. You tell them 'no' in firm tone and they leave you alone.
You can't go to LIma without going to Plaza de Armas (Mayor). Of course, every Peru's city and village have it's own Plaza de Armas but you can't miss this one: beautiful architecture and peaceful sector in the central of a very busy and noisy city.
In Lima, be sure to visit the Plaza Mayor (aka Plaza de Armas) in the downtown historical area. The plaza is surrounded by the Government Palace, City Hall, and a cathedral, and the plaza itself is full of flowerbeds and benches. Definitely the most attractive and historically interesting part of downtown Lima.
El conquistador del Perú tiene una estatua ecuestre de cara a la Plaza Mayor, al lado del solar que se adjudicó , hoy ocupado por el Palacio de Gobierno. Fue donado por la esposa del escultor norteamericano Runssay Mac Donald, siendo inaugurado en ocasión del IV Centenario de la Fundación de Lima. El original se encuentra en Trujillo de Extremadura, tierra natal del conquistador.
Ocupa el mismo lugar del cabildo establecido el 21 de Enero de 1535, siendo su primer alcalde don Nicolás de Rivera "El Viejo". El edificio es ejemplo de la arquitectura neocolonial (1944) respetada en su fachada original, portales y galerías alta con balcones de madera, obra de los arquitectos José Alvares-Calderón y Emilio Harth-Terré. La Municipalidad atesora una importante colección de pinturas peruanas, fotografías y las históricas actas de la Fundación de Lima ocurrida el 18 de Enero de 1535 y de la Independencia de 1821. En su interior destacan el Salón de Recepciones, Salón de Sesiones, el Salón Azul, el Salón Dorado y la Biblioteca.
Fuente construida en 1651, con la estatua del Angel de la Fama y diseñada por Pedro Noguera. Con la última remodelación de la Plaza (1996 y 1997) se colocó una réplica del ángel, que había desaparecido en 1901.
Junto al Palacio de Gobierno se alza la casona más antigua de Lima, construida en 1535 y perteneciente a uno de los fundadores de la ciudad: el capitán español Jerónimo de Aliaga, uno de los trece conquistadores que integraron la expedición de Francisco Pizarro y a quienes se les concedieron terrenos para construir sus propias viviendas en los alrededores de la Plaza de Armas. Todavía la ocupan descendientes directos de Aliaga, la décimosexta generación.
Just to the left of the cathedral is the Archbishops balcony, a relative new comer that was built in 1924. Its intricately carved wooden balconies make it seem older and are indicative of Lima as a whole.
The main place of old Lima. Nowadays Lima is so big that there are a lot of other big "main places" of several districts of the "Municipalidad de Lima". Every district as for example Miraflores, Lince, San Isidro, Jesus Maria, Surco as as well Lima (also a district -the central district) etc has it´s own townhall and government.
Here around the main plaza de armas are placed the gigantic cathedral of Lima, the government building of the peruvian president and several other oficial buildings. Very special is the fact, that all the buildings around are painted in yellow....to have a contrast to the often grey sky. Also amazing are the wooden balkonies at some of the buildings around the plaza.
A walking tour of the Cercado section of Lima is a must. There you will find historic mansions, early commercial skyscrapers, colonial churches, beautiful flowery squares, convents, turn of the century hotels, theatres and newly opened upscale restaurants, along with cheap eateries.