The few cruise ships that visit Lima dock at the commercial port of El Callao, a district west of downtown where Peru’s main international airport is also located. Most of El Callao is down at the heels and can be dangerous, but attractions include an impressive colonial fortress, the Fortaleza Real Felipe, as well as the quiet seaside community of La Punta. Most passengers opt for a tour of Lima, which provides an overview of the city’s top sights and neighborhoods. If you prefer to go solo, hire a taxi, which costs about US$15 per hour, as Lima is too confusing to navigate on your own. El Callao should not be explored on foot.

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Fodor's Essential Peru: with Machu Picchu & the Inca Trail

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