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Parks and Gardens in Lima
Lima was for a long time and unfortunately for some visiting the country still is an unavoidable must on their way to other treasures and attractions Peru has to offer. Lima is ill-reputed as a bustling, dirty, dangerous, unfriendly and unattractive city. This general judgment isn't really fair. Over the last few years the municipality of the Lima with the different district municipalities put great efforts into enhancing the urban image by cleaning and shaping up not only streets and buildings but as well by remodeling Lima's old parks and creating some new green areas.
Today you can find many great parks in Lima, some well-known others hidden, some big and full of history others tiny. Anyhow if you need a place to relax, have a picnic lunch in a peaceful environment, have some fun or just want to take a break from Lima's everyday life, there are some really nice places to do that.
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The Parque de la Reserva was originally opened in 1929 to commemorate all the civilian reservists who fought in the defence of Lima during the War of the Pacific. But more than 65 years later Parque de la Reserva became one of Lima's most visited tourist attractions and houses today a water and light show called the Circuito Magico del Agua (The Magic Water Circuit).
Adjacent to downtown Lima you find the Parque de la Exposición, also known as Parque de la Cultura or Gran Parque de Lima, an oasis of peace and tranquility amidst Lima's noisy and hectic hustle and bustle. Enjoy the Museo de Arte with its beautiful gardens, numerous pavilions, theaters and stages, restaurants and food vendors, monuments, fountains and a Japanese garden.
The olive grove "El Olivar" is probably San Isidro's most valuable treasure. The colonial olive tree plantation stands for the colonial and republican history and serves also as a green lung for the heavy polluted Lima. In and around the park are the municipal government, the famous library, an art gallery, the lagoon and beautiful mansions from the beginning of the 20th century.
The Parque de la Amistad is the great park in Santiago de Surco, a popular place with young and old. One of the main attractions is an original steam locomotive from 1926 and the copy of a Spanish Arc, the "Arco de la Amistad". The Friendship Park is a great place to relax in a beautiful surrounding with lots of green and an artificial lagoon.
Parque de la Muralla (Park of the Wall) is located behind the San Francisco Church directly at the banks of the River Rimac. In this park remains of the old city wall were unearthed. Today you can see around 300 meters of the nicely restored city wall. The small on-site museum displays pieces and artifacts found during the excavation and explains the history of the wall.
Just a few blocks from Plaza San Martin is the Parque Universitario (the University Park). Named after the National University of San Marcos that resided in the large mansion behind the park, the University Park with its famous tower is worth a visit to relax on one of the nice benches and feel a part of Peruvian history.
Lima is one of the few metropolises in the world that has within its city limits a natural reserve with an extraordinary biodiversity. These unique wetlands extent over an area of 263ha and are the only protected area within Limas city limits. The marshes are an important ecological area not only for local flora and fauna but also for scientific, educative and recreational reason.
Campo de Marte is one of Lima's biggest parks, a green lung for the district of Jesus Maria and whole Lima. Campo de Marte is a great place to chill out, relax or have fun. You find lots of green ideal for a nice picnic or just to enjoy the sun, soccer fields, tennis courts, a pool and a skate park. Parades and public assemblies are held at the Campo de Marte.
The Parque de las Leyendas is Lima's traditional zoo. But it's much more than that. It is located amidst a big part of Lima's most extensive ancient city and is one of the most important pre-Hispanic complexes at the central Peruvian coast called the Archaeological Complex of Maranga. The Botanical Garden within the park has more than 20ha of green areas and is one of the biggest in Peru.
The Reducto No. 2 Park was established at exactly the place where the Peruvian army and poorly armed militias under General Andrés Avelino Cácares set up to defend Lima from the invading Chilean troops during the War of the Pacific. The park houses next to green spaces a small museum, dedicated to General Andrés Avelino Cácares.
The Parque Ecologico Loma Amarilla is a natural land elevation with approx. 7.5 hectares, composed of flagstone. The park is a nice place to relax, wander around or enjoy the beautiful gardens and of course the small waterfall.
Parque Central and Parque Kennedy unite to one big park in the heart of Miraflores. At daytime it's a beautiful place to have a little break and enjoy yourself. Here you find the Municipality of Miraflores, the main church "Virgen Milagrosa", a small information point, a playground for the little ones and some nice restaurants and street cafes.
The Love Park is entirely dedicated to all lovers and offers a stunning view over the bay of Lima. It's really romantic here at sunrise and sunset. The surrounding walls are artfully decorated with mosaics. In the center of Parque del Amor you find the statue "El Beso" (The Kiss) from Victor Delfín. It shows two lovers united in an intimate kiss.
Named after the great Peruvian aviator Alfredo Salazar the park located in Miraflores directly at the cliff offers a stunning view over the Pacific Ocean. On clear days you can see the whole bay of Lima from Chorrillos and Barranco in the south to Callao with its islands in the north. Built into the cliffs is the famous "Centro Comercial Larcomar".
The Parque Raimondi in Miraflores is one of the new big park at the cliffs. Parque Raimondi, named after the famous Italian-born Peruvian explorer, scientist, writer, cartographer and naturalist has of course a stunning view over the Pacific Ocean. There are huge green areas with flowers and trees, some artificial hills, a cycling path and a playground for kids that promise a relaxing afternoon.
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