2nd July 2013- checked out of the hostel and then walked over to the hotel were I am meeting mum! And for the start of our toucan tour. I was able to check in right away which was great. I was thinking I would have to store my bags but was then able to just relax in the room and have some breakfast while I waited for mum to arrive. Also spent some time repacking my bag while waiting. Mum arrived at 12:30 which was later than expecting due to heavy traffic and road closures from the airport.
We spent a quick catch up in the room before heading for lunch and a look around the city. Found lunch at a nice local restaurant were we were able to try some local dishes of Opora a potato dish with herb cream sauce and then Lomo a beef dish with tomato , onions, peppers sauce. And a special drink of pisco a lemon cocktail for two beautiful ladies. While enjoying lunch people are approaching and mum had to buy a painting from a local man selling them. After lunch walked through the main centre past the cathedral again. Stopped to look in lots of the shops and made purchases including a bah which mum can use a hand luggage to hold all the shopping!!
arrived at the San fransico monastery and church. It was built in the late 1600 and had been repaired and rebuild almost continually since then due to earthquakes. We timed it just right as the English tour was starting in 5 mins. We walked first upstairs to the old library. It held thousands of manuscripts from the 17th and 18th century. Then walked through several other rooms with artwork from both Peru and international artist including rubin. Viewed the choir alter which had seating for 130 singers. Made our way around the courtyard and view the rooms used by the priest before giving the mass. It was all so beautiful and had been restored in such glory with delicate carved wooden ceilings, gold leaf and hand painted Spanish tiles. We then made our way down below the church into the catacombs . It is estimated that over 25000 people were burried there on mass. There are no graves just bones moved into mass burial chambers. It seemed to be a complicated system of moving the people around. They started off burried below the church and then moved further to the back and deeper as more people died and need to buried. And they believe there are at least 3 layers with only the first layer having been excavated and archeologically explored. We then made our way back though the courtyard and stopped to look around the small stalls on the way out. Walked back along past the cathedral and stopped at the supermarket to pick up some water and breakfast for tomorrow morning before back to the hotel for a 6pm meeting with the tour leader and group. We meet the 7 other people and got am outline of what to expect over the next couple of weeks. Repacked our bags so that we could leave one bag in Lima and just travel with one bag between mum and I. Earlish night as we are off to the airport at 6am tomorrow.