I woke up to the sound of our bus speeding it’s way through the dusty desert coast of Peru. About half our bus was awake and watching a movie, in a little while the bus steward would be passing a small snack for breakfast. We soon entered the city of Lima, the city however is huge and it would take another forty five minutes until we reached the bus terminals in the heart of the city. I didn’t mind the wait, I was glad that I would be in the company of my family once again and that tomorrow we’d all be together celebrating my birthday.
My uncle Freddy was at the station when we arrived, being a taxi driver he’s the one that usually drives me around when I go home and it is him and his friends that provide the transportation for Karikuy. So as we made our way back to my neighborhood in Central Lima I had very little on my mind as to what I would be doing for the day, what I knew for certain though was that I’d be in Callao eating some of the best ceviche in Peru.
My neighborhood of Planeta, the smoke is of a train that just rolled on through.
I had a couple of hours to take a nap and get in a good breakfast before we set off again at noon. Before leaving for Peru I had failed to pack much clothing for myself due to all the gifts and donations I had received. So first on my list of things to do was to head to one of the large super centers found throughout Lima and pick up some shorts and a shirt for tomorrows party.
After picking up some clothes and sipping on a delicious fruit smoothie we headed to the port city of Callao. Callao has remained the biggest port in Peru since it was founded in 1537, the city was largely destroyed and vast areas flooded when a tsunami hit after a strong earthquake in 1746. I commonly hear that 1/4 of the original Callao lies underwater, however that number fluctuates with each story and it’s hard to tell, I will do more research on that when I return later in the year. Here are some pictures:
And a short video of the ride up to La Punta, notice the fortress at the end of the video, it is the largest and strongest Spanish fortress built in Latin America.
There is a little restaurant at La Punta (The Point) of Callao and I recommend it for anyone who is in the area, it is called the Neptune. I bring tourists and guests there and frequently include it in my trip itineraries. It has to be my favorite place in Peru to eat ceviche, because not only do they make one amazing dish but they also provide the best setting and scenery to wolf down a plate of this signature Peruvian dish.
Everyone dig in!
Second course of fried calamari…mmmm.
All gone 🙁
Finishing up a meal at Neptune’s is always followed by a stroll over at the oceanfront which is about a hundred feet from the restaurant itself. Currently a lot of La Punta is under construction which is slated to be finished by next year but there are still plenty of spots where you can go and watch the waves splashing against the barrier wall. The feeling of being under the warm sun after a filling meal of ceviche can be enough impetus for anyone to return to Peru and is always one of the highlights of my trip back home, I recommend it to everyone I meet.
There is not much to tell about the rest of my day, I spent most of it back home catching up with family that would drop by to say hello as well as doing some laundry and double checking my budget for the rest of the trip.
Knowing that I would get very little sleep the following day I made a point of heading to bed early. My birthday party would not disappoint.
Founder of Karikuy, an organization in Peru that brings travelers to visit and explore the country. Julio also runs the Karikuy Volunteer program and is the editor of this blog. Julio likes to write about his adventures in Peru as well as Peruvian folklore, mysteries and secluded locations.