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The Bohemian District in Lima

Translated by Kate Norman — one year ago

Original text by Jesus en su tinta

Hello everyone!

I hope that you're all well. Today I want to tell you about a district known as Barranco.

Barranco is the district in Lima where I decided to live for approximately a year and a half, as it was quite close to my work, which is close to Lima, around half an hour but there are 9 million people in the city so there is always traffic.


Barranco is known as the Bohemian District of Lima, the district that had important people living there like the European singer Chabuca Granda, in fact, you can find a sculpture of her along the "Bridge of Sighs" in her honour and to remember one of her songs "Jose Antonio". Here you can find many cultural and fun things to do, like go to bars, restaurants and discos: an architectural beginning for both the Republic and the Bridge of Sighs.

This Liman district is lucky enough to have a view of the sea, therefore it has a lot of tourism for its view from the esplanade. In my opinion, it is a rival to Miraflores, the district that borders Barranco, and where there is the most accommodation. Although, Barranco has accommodation too and a beautiful Boutique Hotel that was built a couple of years ago.

In my time living in Barranco, I could visit any part that I wanted to. Here I have made a list of the most beautiful places to go to in Barranco:

1. The Bridge of Sighs:



A wooden bridge that unites the "bajada de baños" of Barranco, its name comes from the Bridge of Sighs in Venice (except I don't actually know very much about the bridge in Venice and truthfully, they are really different but, for the romantic touch the bridge was named after that one).

There is a tradition in Barranco and this bridge: if it is the first time that you see it, you have to walk along the entire bridge and make a wish, holding your breath. You can't cheat! The bridge isn't very long so you can cross it, make your wish and hope it comes true. In reality, I don't remember my wish, and I think I have made more than just one!

2. Restaurant Tio Mario:

This place is by the side of the Bridge of Sighs, a restaurant that is said to have started as just a wheelbarrow and little by little it rose until it became what it is today. People line up just to get into the restaurant, so you have to go early if you want to taste the best kebabs in Lima. I forgot to mention that kebabs are meat skewers from the heart of a cow and accompanied with white potatoes, Peruvian corn on the cob, and peppers for those spice lovers.

If you are a vegetarian and you are with people who want to go to the Tio Mario restaurant, I've got you, don't worry. You can ask for some delicious "picarones" that are traditional Lima sweets made from fried pumpkin and sweet potato, bathed with fig honey, super tasty! Or, you could also ask for a refreshing drink, a "chica mora" (which is a anti-oxidant drink made from Peruvian brown maize), with all of this you will need to keep in mind that us Peruvians, we are quite proud of our food. Lima is considered the Gastronomy capital of America where gentlemen eat like the Gods from the most expensive restaurants.

3. Bar Santos:

This bar is in another great location like Tio Mario, so if you come early you can sit here on the terrace and enjoy the view of the Bridge of Sighs and the "bajada be baños", which is the walk that leads you to the sea. You can chat to the people around you and see who is sharing the night with you. Take advantage of asking for a drink made from Pisco - grape liquor.

4. Bajada de Baños:

The "Bajada de Baños" is a little walk by the sit of the Bridge of Sighs that you must also take advantage of, there are many restaurants next to it, and a hostel. The most beautiful part of the walk is going down the slope and arriving at the sea. You can also see a small hermitage that is a small church in the process of restoration, the outside has been restored but if the roof and interior isn't, its a real shame and I hope they do it soon.

If you walk along the border of the hermitage you will then arrive at a viewpoint high up, where you can see La Costa Verde and the mound of a hill with a cross in it, which is the district of Chorrillos. Sometimes you can find people playing European music and if you go with a partner, they will come over to you and play for you something so that you will give them a tip! You can't be stingy!

5. Plaza de Barranco:

La Plaza de Barranco is small but cosy, it has a basin in the middle with a statue, and the thing I like most about this place is the light from the front of the library. I'm being serious, I love the library more than the church so take advantage and sit in one of the steps and people watch, the neighbours, the children with their scooters. If you go at the weekend, you will also see the gastronomy festival that happens in the Plaza. You must buy some vegetable soup (as I've told you already, us Peruvians love to eat).

6. Boulevard de Barranco:

It is a street with just one pedestrianised walkway and it is right in front of the Plaza de Barranco, if you go on the weekend you will see loads of young people going into different bars.

It is to everyone's taste, but in my opinion, the most enjoyable place is the La Noche bar where there is always a live show and you can enjoy the night with friends there.

If you want to know more about the La Noche bar in Barranco, I have given you the link here:

7. Bar Ayahuasca:

I have to mention this bar! It is located at a Republican mansion and here you can take advantage of the grape liquor, soft or sour, whatever you like. The decoration is 100% Peruvian and they get lots of foreign tourists.


8. Bar la Posada del Angel:

If you're one of those people who prefer a more relaxed environment with ballad music, you can go into this bar, it is really close to the Plaza de Barranco and almost right in front of the Ayahuasca (there's something for everyone's tastes), and there are calmer decorations and like in the Ayahuasca you will still have an amazing time here.

9. Pedro de Osma Museum:



If you love culture, architecture and all different artistic styles, then visit this palacial museum that will open its doors to you with kindness. You can stay in the Avenue de Pedro de Osma, a few blocks away from the Plazqa Barranco. The buses pass this avenue on their way to Chorrillos and you will see great big trees on this avenue.

10. Mario Testino Museum, also known as MATE:



Mario Testino is a really cool international photographer and he has a foundation where you can see his photos and his exquisite knack for taking photos of models all over the world.

There are also permanent collections as well as exhibitions that change, this museum is really close to Pedro de Osma and so you can explore them both

If you would like to know more about this museum, you should visit this link, but keep in mind that it is closed on Mondays! :


11. The Electrical Museum:

This museum can seem like it is just for kids, as it is small and the entrance looks as if it is a metropolitan pathway, but it is picturesque and has an exhibition on how to generate electricity and it also has a special bicycle that when you pedal, you can see it generating the electrical energy, as well as burning calories, so, pedal away!

12. "Dedalo" Art and Craft Zone:

Address: Saenz Peña 295

If you would like to buy an ornament, or just look at what they are selling, go inside Dedalo to see all of their pretty little things. Truthfully, I have never bought anything there and I have only been to look around at the things they have, it is great. They have a little café inside as well if you need a break.

13. Viewpoint de Costa Verde:



There are a few places in Barranco that refuse to disappear, and these small parks give an amazingly beautiful view of the Pacific Ocean. You can sit on the grass and watch the sunset or just walk or ride your bike to take a good photo. You can watch people surfing from here and see the perfect ocean from my beautiful Lima.

14. Museum of Contemporary Art:

This museum, as the name suggests, has many different abstract pieces of art that you can take advantage of if you go through Barranco. The truth is it is not very close to the Plaza, it would be around 20 minutes to walk but if you want an adventure to see all of this art then start walking! It is at the entrance to Barranco as it borders with Miraflores.

15. You think that's it? No, there is so, so much more!

As you have seen, Barranco has so much to offer and so I have not told you all that you can discover here, there are other places to eat such as:

  • Restaurante Cala (by the sea)
  • Bar Picas (below the Bridge of Sighs)
  • Restaurante Amor Amar (Cevichería)

Ah! And how could I forget the sandwich shop Mostros, on the Avenue Pierola. The place is small and you eat by the street, but you have to try it one time and then you will want to go again.

There are also the discos:

  • Discoteca Sargento Pimienta
  • Discoteca el Dragon

And there is also a tourist centre Danzas Peruanas for visitors:

  • La Candelaria

How to arrive at Barranco?

The metro has a station called "Bulevar" and from here you can walk and start your tour of the most Bohemian district in Lima.

I hope that you have enjoyed this summary of Barranco, a district open to tourism. If you're from Lima and you don't know this place, I won't forgive you! If you're visiting Lima soon and you don't have Barranco on your list, add it! And don't forget to make your wish on the Bridge of Sighs.

I will see you in my next adventure! Thanks for reading, see you soon!

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