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Getting Around Lima

Getting around Lima can be surprisingly easily. It is a huge city, but in Lima, transportation comes in many forms, and there is always something going in the direction you want to go.

Note: locals still call some of Central Lima鈥檚 major boulevards by their old names: Avenida Garcilaso de la Vega (Avenida Wilson), Avenida 9 de Diciembre (Paseo Col贸n) and Avenida Nicol谩s de Pi茅rola (Colmena).


Lima鈥檚 buses operate a dizzying system. They come in three sizes: combis are small 14-seater vans, coasters hold about 20 people, and buses are full-sized (sometimes retired American school buses). Each runs a fixed route, and has its major destinations painted on the side. If you are not sure if the bus is going where you want it to, ask the assistant who will be hanging out the side, trying to get you to board.

Once onboard, you will be charged (usually $0.50-$0.80) and given a ticket. Don鈥檛 lose the ticket, as the collector checks them frequently. The best available map of the bus and combi routes is located at

Lima鈥檚 bus-rapid-transport system, the Metropolitano, was inaugurated in 2010. It has 38 designated stations from Naranjal in the north to Matellini in the south, including stops in Chorrillos, Barranco, Miraflores, San Isidro, La Victoria and Central Lima. There are 3 lines following the same 26-kilometers (16-mi) route, with a deviation near downtown, between the Estaci贸n Central and Ram贸n Castilla stations. Lines A and C go into the heart of the city, whereas Line B skirts the west side of downtown. Fares are paid with a rechargeable electronic card that can be purchased at each station. The ride costs about $0.60, regardless of how far you are traveling. The Metropolitano operates every day 5:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Maps of the system are available at Central Estaci贸n and many other stops. Tel: 203-9000, URL


After 25 years of work, Lima鈥檚 Tren El茅ctrico went online in January 2012. It hasfive lines, stretching from the suburbs in the extreme north to the far south, and out to Callao. Regardless of length of journey, fare is $0.60. For complete information on fares and routes, see:


Lima has one of the highest densities of taxis in the world. They are everywhere. For a truly safe ride, it is best to have your hotel or restaurant call鈥攅veryone has a list of reliable taxis that they work with. Arriving at the airport, the taxis waiting by the arrivals terminal are considered safe. Hailing them on the street is a little riskier, so be sure to follow the guidelines laid out in the Lima safety section. There are no meters, so fares must be negotiated before the start of the trip. A short trip鈥攕ay Miraflores to Barranco鈥攕hould cost no more than $3. A cross-city trip can cost up to $12.Taxis charge more going to or from the airport. Recommended companies are:

Andina Taxi: offers airport transfers, as well as city tours; the company speaks English. Tel: 253-6135/985-901-030, E-mail:, URL:

Manchego Tours: also has English-speaking staff and offers private transportation to any corner of the country, and plans all services you may need. Conjunto Habitacional Elias Aguirre Modulo C, Dpto A, Callao. Tel: 420-1289/465-3427, E-mail: /, URL:


Internationally known car rental agencies have offices at the airport, as well as in Miraflores:

Budget: Av. Larco 998, Miraflores. Tel: Tel: 204-4400/517-1880 (airport), E-mail:, URL:

Dollar: Av. Cantuarias 341, Miraflores. Tel: 444-3050/Airport: 517-2571, E-mail:, URL:

Hertz: Cantuarias 160, Miraflores. Tel: 447-2129/Airport: 517-2402, E-mail:, URL:

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