If you’re looking for some peace and quiet or a place for outdoor activities in the capital of Peru, there are various public spaces to relax in Lima where you can go.
Without a doubt, Lima is brimming with life, culture, movement and people. However, for those who desire to wind down within city limits, finding a quiet space is of the essence. Let us at Traveling & Living in Peru show you the best public places to relax in Lima throughout the most popular districts below.
In Miraflores: The touristy district
This touristy district of Lima offers visitors many outdoor options that are centrally located, including the famous Parque Kennedy and Parque del Amor.
Parque Central and Parque Kennedy
These parks are right in the center of Miraflores, surrounding the Virgen Milagrosa Church and adjacent to Av. Diagonal and Av. Larco.
Artists gather here in the afternoons, offering their paintings for sale. Craftsmen and antiquaries occupy the small plaza, and sweets and sandwiches can be bought from well-run stalls. This is also the place for small concerts and fairs.
The Boardwalk, Parque del Amor and Parque Salazar
The boardwalk in Miraflores is one of the most popular public spaces to relax in Lima.
It has picnic areas, playing fields and adventure sports (hang gliding) as well as cafes that look out over the sea and a shopping center.
Furthermore, its main ocean-view parks, Parque del Amor (Love Park) — which has a sculpture called El beso by Victor Delfin and inscriptions by Peru’s principal poets — and Parque Salazar, host cultural activities on the weekend as well as an annual book fair.
On the boardwalk, you can also appreciate sculptures such as El tiempo (or monstruo) by Jose Tola, one of Peru’s best contemporary artists; Amarre by Lima sculptor Sonia Prager, adjacent to Bajada Balta; and Intihuatana by Fernando de Szyzslo, together with one of Marcelo Wong’s iconic works near the Villena Bridge.
The district’s enchantingly beautiful central park is surrounded by old houses, the library, the town hall and the Santisima Cruz church.
In the middle of this space is a statue of a danaide on a lake surrounded by other marble sculptures. The Barberini candelabrum is nearby, together with angels sculpted in Carrara marble.There is also space set aside for plays, exhibitions, concerts and other cultural activities.
In Barranco: For a bohemian vibe
Barranco is a bohemian district renowned for its artistic presence. Some of the best public places to relax in Lima are found here.
Puente de los Suspiros
Puente de los Suspiros has been restored since it was built in 1876 to join the two sides of the gully and permit access between Ayacucho and La Ermita streets.
Its rustic beauty and romance has inspired composers and writers such as Chabuca Granda, who captured its magic in the waltz El Puente de los Suspiros in 1960.
Running the length of Barranco is a quiet and peaceful boardwalk with small parks and shared spaces, such as Paseo Saenz Peña. You often see people strolling along, perhaps resting in its alcoves, enjoying the impressive views of the sea.
In San Isidro: Upscale and residential
San Isidro is the upper-class, business district of Lima. It also makes the list of best public spaces in Lima to relax.
Parque El Olivar
This park is considered a national monument that dates back to the colonial era when, in 1560, the first olive trees were brought from Spain.
The original plantation had as many as 2,800 trees. Nowadays, there are around 1,600 olive trees.
The park is large and peaceful and the habitat of many flora and fauna. Next to the Casa de la Cultura you can view an old olive press and the oldest of the olive trees.
It extends from Av. Santa Cruz up to Paz Soldan Park, flanked by Av. Conquistadores and Antero Aspillaga. Entry is free, and it is open 24/7.
In La Molina: Where it’s always sunny
Although a bit further from the center of Lima, La Molina offers visitors nontraditional spaces to relax and enjoy some peace and quiet in the big city.
Plaza Cultural Norte
This cultural public space in La Molina is characterized by its attempt to merge with the green landscape that surrounds it. The concrete walls share space with green vegetation that emerges from the building, and the rooftop is also adorned with pasture.
In San Borja: Designed to be green
San Borja is a residential district further from the center that offers promising public spaces to relax in Lima.
El Pentagonito (Parque de la Felicidad)
Named as such because it surrounds the Ministry of Defense building, which is nicknamed El Pentagonito (little Pentagon), this park is a favorite of runners and cyclists.
Don’t be surprised to see 5k or 10k races happening every weekend. It’s one of the great public spaces to relax in Lima to take your pet and get in some personal fitness time.
Credit: Ultimate Journeys Peru
Main cover: Depositphotos.com
This article has been revised and updated from its original publication on February 25, 2019.