The Spanish had little use for the Inca capitol city of Cuzco since it sat trapped in the Andes, so after their conquest was complete, they based the new capitol in Lima right on the Pacific coast. We were impressed with the infrastructure investments in Lima, as well as the beauty of the land.
Ironically, the Inca had conquered the settlers of Lima before the Spanish arrived and found little use for the coast. The prior people had built a massive adobe pyramid that slowly got buried as centuries passed. Eventually, the Miraflores district sprang up around and on top of the buried ruins. Today the archeological value of Huaca Pucllana protects the boundaries of this adobe brick complex from any further encroachment, creating an interesting juxtaposition next to modern mid-rises.
But what really excited us about Lima was the food. The world’s 35th best restaurant is here, and large immigrant populations from China and Japan call Lima home (one of Peru’s quite controversial ex-presidents is the son of Japanese immigrants and had to flee back to his ancestral homeland for amnesty when things got dicey). We went straight to Chinatown to satisfy some cravings but ran into language difficulties; almost nobody spoke Chinese there! Next up was visiting Edo, a sushi bar where the chefs, all young Asian-Peruvians, spoke only Spanish, and the rolls reflected their fusion background.