Better late than never. The third on Times list and forth on mine, is the church of San Fransisco.
Of course I visited the San Fransisco church when I was in Lima for three months. A colonial church of great magnitude which I gladely visit again if I ever return, which I will, or hope I will. The church is very close to Plaza de armas, maybe 2 minutes walk.
As the text on Time, 10 things to do in Lima tells us about the church, ”Most people go to San Francisco, however, for its catacombs”, as did I.
”Tour guides say an estimated 75,000 bodies are buried under San Francisco alone, and many of the remains are exposed, stacked in strange patterns in circular stone pits. A catacomb tour is not for the squeamish or the claustrophobic.” says Time. This is correct, or this is the information I was given as well.’
Looking at the above picture, the catacombs are to the left and the entrance to the right are one of the main entrances to the church. The church is beautiful inside and well worth a visit.
”The Church of San Francisco is located about 45 minutes by taxi from San Isidro/Miraflores. It’s open from 9:30 a.m. to 5:45 p.m. daily, with tours (including the catacombs) lasting approximately one hour; the entrance fee is about $2.”
Well, this statement needs correcting. Yes, a cabride is 45 minutes, by bus, maybe 20+ a walk of 15 min if you find your way. Cab is preferable if you don´t know your way or like reading maps. The opening hours I can´t argue, but, the last guided tours doesn´t start 5.45. To go down in the catacombs you need to go with a guide. When I was there, the only available was in Spanish, why I don´t know.
Time mentions the texts, but what they forget to mention is the fab library (where no photos are allowed), much alike the library in the Harry Potter movies with wooden staircases and old old old books. I think that is the highlight of the entire visit and why you need to go to the church and the monestary.
If I recommend it? Yes, I sincerely do.
The church and the catacombs get a five out of five. It is cheap, it is open and it is a lot lot lot of art and other stuff to be seen.