When you have a stopover in Lima you'll fly into the Jorge Chávaz International Airport. It's the biggest and busiest airport in Peru, handling approximately two-hundred thousand aircraft and twenty million passengers every year.
The Jorge Chávaz International Airport is in the Callao district of Lima which is around eleven kilometers from the center and the main tourist area, Miraflores. Callao is on the coast and easily accessible by taxi from the airport which is a bonus for anyone on a short Lima layover.
While there isn't a metro service operating between Lima and the airport, there is a regular shuttle bus, the Airport Express Lima, going to Miraflores. It departs hourly between seven in the morning and midnight and takes around one hour. Taxis are the most common form of transport though, as they are quick and very economical. The average price for the thirty-minute journey is S/50. It's highly recommended to agree on the fare with the driver before commencing the journey.
6 hour layover in Lima
When you have a six hour long layover before you hot foot it out of the airport, subtract the two and a half hours that you need to be back in the airport to check-in for your Lima connection. If you're lucky and pass through immigration and collect your bags quickly, you may have two to two and a half hours to spare. A taxi ride into Callao can take anywhere from twenty minutes to half an hour and the same to Miraflores, so you'll have to decide whether to risk going out of the airport or whether it's better, and less stressful, to stay put.
- Traffic on the road system between the airport and Lima is frequently congested and can often be totally gridlocked, so it's wise to allow extra time on the journey into the city in case that occurs.
- Chill out on your stopover in either of the two VIP lounges which are open twenty-four hours. They offer a variety of services including a buffet and limitless drinks.
- Enjoy a meal of traditional Peruvian food at La Nacional Restaurant in the departure lounge. Causa, a layered potato dish, is well worth trying.
- Don’t forget to drop off your bags at a Lima luggage storage spot.
8 hour layover in Lima
When you have an eight-hour Lima layover, drop your bags at an airport luggage storage service while you decide whether to go into Miraflores or head for Callao. There are things you can do in both on a short stopover so the choice is yours. Spend a couple of hours wandering around the Monumental district of Callao and you'll get a real insight into the cultural side of this bustling port city. Calle Monumental in Callao is a blaze of colorful graffiti-daubed buildings, art galleries and traditional eateries where you can pick up something to eat as you wander around. Choose Miraflores and as you'll only have time to take in one Inca ruin, so make it a good one by going to the Huaca Pucllana, an impressive seven-stage pyramid dating back to 200AD.
- Join a free walking tour to discover the history of Monumental Street and its sixty plus murals.
- Get some fresh air by strolling the seafront promenade in the Park of Love and take a souvenir selfie with the kissing sculpture.
10 hour layover in Lima
A ten-hour layover in Lima isn't difficult to fill with interesting activities. One of the best ways to see the city without tiring yourself out in the heat and humidity is by catching the hop-on hop-off bus. The bus runs along three different routes during the day and also operates a night service which includes the Magic Circuit of Water. To see the main city sights and the most impressive architecture, take the route which goes through the Plaza de Armas and you'll be able to jump off at the cathedral as well as a couple of palaces.
- When your Lima stopover is at night, don't miss going to the Magic Water Circuit in the Parque de la Reserva. There's a fountain complex there which covers several acres of ground and there are spectacular nightly light and water shows.
- Fill your layover with food by taking a four-hour combined market visit and cookery class where you'll learn how to make traditional Peruvian dishes.
12 hour layover in Lima
You'll be able to fully immerse yourself in the history and culture of Peru when you have a twelve-hour Lima layover. You'll find one of the best ways to make the most of your layover time is to hire a private driver-guide with an air conditioned vehicle to take you to top pre-Inca sites like Huallamarca, Pucllana and Pachacamac. By hiring a private guide, who picks you up and drops you back at the airport, you'll have more time for sightseeing rather than just sitting on a tour bus while it collects other passengers from their hotels, and it won't cost you very much more.
- If you like maritime history, don't miss visiting the Naval Museum of Peru in Callao or the Museo Abtao del Callao where there's a 1950s submarine.
- When you just want to relax during your stopover, leave your baggage in a Lima suitcase storage facility and spend your free time on Playa Cantolao in Callao.
24 hour layover in Lima
When you have an overnight layover in Lima you'll be able to take sightseeing this fascinating city at your leisure. Join a walking tour of the historic district led by a knowledgeable guide and you'll get an insight into the city's past as well as be taken to exciting places like the creepy catacombs of a Franciscan monastery. Alternatively, to escape the hustle and bustle, board a boat cruise at the Miraflores Marina Club and go sailing around the Palomino Islands.
- The Palomino Islands are teeming with birdlife including Humboldt penguins and are inhabited by seal colonies, so it's a great opportunity to do some wildlife photography.
- Some boat cruises will provide you with a wetsuit so you can dive in and swim with the seals. That's great so long as you're not heading straight to the airport afterwards and can get a shower at your accommodation, because turning up for your Lima connection damp and smelling of fish won't go down well with the other passengers.