Pachacamac Temple — Photo courtesy of Jose Enrique MolinaThere are plenty of places nearby Lima that are worth a half-day excursion, and some of these can be visited in some two hours. Pachacamac Ruins and Site Museum is one of these spots: however, let us tell you that if you have enough time the town nearby can make for a one-day relaxed excursion: but if you have limited time and want to make the most of your stay in Lima, you can take a short morning tour to Pachacamac and be back in Lima at lunch time.
If you are on your own and more on the backpacker style, you can take any public transportation on Benavides avenue, step down at the Panamericana Sur road and take there the Pachacamac connection –a public small bus, or “combi” as Peruvians have named there. May take some more time and you will probably have to deal with a full vehicle,, but fares are unbeatable: 1.50 soles each bus, or three soles (one dollar) for the complete trip.
The other option is booking a tour at any travel agency, whose prices may greatly differ one from another depending on the services. You can also take the “Mirabus”, that departs every day (Tuesday to Sunday) at 10am from Miraflores Central Park, and will bring you back around 1pm. This tour stops briefly at Pantanos de Villa, a bird sanctuary, and includes tickets to Pachacamac ruins and site Museum.
Pachacamac used to be one of the main places of worship for the ancient Peruvians; Pachacamac was the one of their most important gods; he was the one who not only gave life to the world, but also ruled the earthquakes, so it was very important to keep him satisfied. So people built a large complex consecrated to honor him.
This complex, made of large adobe bricks, comprises a fortress, temples (the Templo del Sol, the Templo de Urpi Wachak and the Templo de la Luna or Acllawasi), a pyramid, and some other smaller buildings.
Nowadays, the ruins are an imposing relic from those days gone by, and the site museum displays many different artifacts (including the original idol representing the god Pachacamac) and textiles. However, the site is still being excavated, and visitors can walk and even have a guided tour in English.
If you are reasonably fit, you can climb the Sun Temple pyramid and enjoy a great view of the coast and the two small islands, provided it is not one of those typical misty Lima days. Undoubtedly, recommendable for everyone.