International Studies Abroad ®est. 1987

Culture Corner

<small>View Lima in a larger map</small>

The above map highlights the ISA Lima Offices, location of universities, as well as other locations useful to ISA students.

An aerial view of the vast city of Lima, which includes thirty central districts.

What's Lima Like?

Lima was founded by water's edge as the main South American seaport for importing and exporting goods some five hundred years ago. At this time, when the Spanish conquered its indigenous inhabitants in the early 1500s, the population exploded and the city grew in prominence with every sea traveler and tradesman passing through. The Inca's past melted with that of the Spanish conquistadors, forming the country's capital, that today, blends both indigenous tradition with European culture.

What the Spanish brought when they settled Lima was the inevitable future of skyscrapers, upscale shopping plazas, and commercial activity to rival most of South America. Lima now holds a bustling 6.4 million people within its four hundred square miles of metropolitan hubbub. Evidence of Lima's past can still be seen throughout the city. Some 1,600 wooden balconies from the colonial era bespeak the influence the Muslim Moors had over the Spanish. Lush green parks with overhanging Brazilian nut trees, which are thousands of years old, battle for space with constructions of eight well-established Peruvian universities. A walk through Lima is like a walk through history.

Region and Population

Lima (population 7,000,000 in Lima Proper) is the capital and the largest city in Peru. It is located in the province of Lima, along the central coast of Peru. The Lima Province is the only province in the country that does not belong to any of Peru's 25 regions.


Lima, located on the Pacific Coast, is humid all year long. January, February, and March are the hottest and sunniest months of the year. Light clothes are needed for these hot summer months. April, May, November, and December are mild months, during which the temperatures generally range from 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. June, July, August, and September are winter months, but the temperature in Lima does not get so cold that you will need a winter coat; a heavy jacket and a sweatshirt/fleece should suffice.

It rarely rains in Lima, and if it does, it is only a light drizzle, which the locals call "garua". Apart from the strong summer months, Lima usually appears a little gray, like a London fog.

Average monthly highs and lows (degrees in Fahrenheit) and rainfall (in inches) in Lima:

Avg. Rainfall0.120000.20.20.320.320.320.120.120

Helpful Links


Check out what Peru is like! The video starts out by showing you the marvel of Cusco and then later (around the 4-minute mark) shows you the neighborhoods in Lima.