The heart of Lima is found in its Centro Hist贸rico (historic center). Once an Inca city of some importance, Lima became a major city under the Spanish, who decided to establish a port at nearby Callao. Although their first efforts at building a city on the site were destroyed in a 1746 earthquake, the city was rebuilt and today is home to some of the most impressive architecture in the Americas.
Any visitor to Lima will probably visit the historical center at some point. All of the important churches, monasteries and plazas are located there, as well as many of the most interesting museums. There are also a number of hotels and hostels, some of which are stately colonial homes that have been converted to hotels. The backpacker set in particular will find Central Lima's hotels affordable and unique.
Central Lima includes not only the Centro Hist贸rico, but also the Cercado de Lima (the blocks immediately around the historic center), the Barrio Chino (Chinatown), and the Bre帽a and La Victoria neighborhoods.
Convento y Iglesia de San Francisco is one of Lima鈥檚 most haunting (almost literally) and memorable sites. Originally constructed in 1546, it is one of the oldest churches in South America. It also
Lima\'s Catedral is a highlight of any visit to the city. The first stone of the cathedral was laid by Francisco Pizarro, the Spanish conquistador who defeated the Inca. Ironically, Pizarro would be