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Monday, July 5, 2010

Peru Vacation Day 2: Quick Update

Today, we went out to see some of the sights of Lima. We were taken on a half-day city tour that mostly seemed to involve sitting in a bus and looking at sights through the windows of the bus. We did not actually get down and visit most of the sights we saw.

We drove through the exclusive neighborhood of San Isidro before driving downtown. We spent about 10 to 15 minutes at the San Martin Plaza, but spent most of our time in the Main Square. I took pictures of the Presidential Palace, the main cathedral, and the adjacent arch bishop's residence, etc. The place is actually a museum, but to enter would require entrance fees, and would probably take more time than we had on the tour, so we stayed on the outside.

I had my first (and probably last) pisco sour at a supposedly famous bar near the Main Square. It is very bitter and sour, and also very strong. It cost me 13 soles, including a tip of 1 sol. We also visited the Saint Francis monastery and the catacombs beneath this place. This was the only place which we actually entered on our tour. It was reasonably interesting.

We were dropped off for lunch at a restaurant called Al Fresca where I got to try ceviche. It was very tasty, but the restaurant took a long time to get us our food, and it was very expensive too (even though our tour guide assured us that the restaurant was actually reasonably priced and is supposed to be tops in quality).

Later we did some shopping, including at an open air artisan's market a few blocks from our hotel. I picked up some pottery, alpaca shawls and a hand-made wall-hanging. Dinner was a couple of bananas which we picked up at an American-style grocery store, and some hot chocolate. It is time to pack everything carefully and get ready for the next leg of our trip that will take us to Cusco for 3 days.

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