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EO39 Puente Piedra – Ate “Consorcio Via”

From the beginning, the Consorcio Via has been one of my favorites and it is a definite Ruta Recomendable. It was the first bus line that I encountered that does not have a cobrador, only a driver. In the buses they publish a chart with authorized stops all along the route. This is now copied by the NO101 “Nueva America”. The core of the route of the EO39 is Universitaria – La Marina – Javier Prado. This is one of the main corridors for public transport and on this route, you cannot find a better alternative.

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Centro de Lima

From Miraflores the Ruta Recomendable to take to Centro de Lima is the OM23 (blue line). Get on at Ovalo de Miraflores (Parque Kennedy) or anywhere along Avenida Arequipa.

The ride to Centro de Lima will take about 20-30 minutes and will cost S./1.20 if you get on at Ovalo de Miraflores or S./1.00 if you get on at Angamos or closer towards Centro de Lima. The price of the boleto (ticket) is somewhat arbitrary, so you may be charged anywhere between S./1.00 or S./1.50. Never pay more than S./1.50.

Get off at Avenida Grau for the Museo de Arte de Lima (MaLi). From here everything is within walking distance. The next block north is Real Plaza, a shopping center that includes Starbucks. The Sheraton Hotel is also here, as well as the Estacion Central for the Metropolitano.

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a Free Pisco Sour

The Pisco Sour is the closest thing Peru has to a traditional drink. The base of this cocktail is Pisco Puro (pure), a spirit made of grapes. It is similar in taste to Grappa (Italy) or Palinka (Hungary) and a host of other varieties. I cannot recommend Pisco Puro, but the Pisco Sour it is a nice cocktail.

An excellent place to enjoy a Pisco Sour is El Bolivariano in Pueblo Libre. The High Resolution Rutas Recomendables Combi Map includes a discount voucher for El Bolivariano with which you are entitled to 2 Pisco Sours for free. So make sure to bring someone along!

Pueblo Libre has a totally different feel from Miraflores. It is worthwhile to make a trip to Pueblo Libre, if only for the Pisco Sours in El Bolivariano. But apart from that you could also visit the excellent Museo de Arqueología, Antropología e Historia del Perú. The museum is pretty much next door to El Bolivariano.

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Dateros and Time clocks

One of the most intriguing questions in the world of Lima’s combis is: who are those mysterious men that you can find at many crossroads that are shouting unintelligible code to the cobradores or the drivers (and seem to get paid for it even)?

These men (and women) are dateros (from the root “data”). They form a vital part of the combi infrastructure, because they allow the drivers to maintain the frequency (in theory at least, because it is not uncommon to see two or even three combis of the same line passing together). The other element of this system is the good, old time clock. This is a device where you insert a piece of paper and it stamps the time.