The fifth largest city in Latin America with a population of more than 8 million, Lima constitutes both a province and metropolitan area, much like a city/county arrangement in the U.S., e.g., Los Angeles. Sprawling across three river valleys on Peru's central coast and consisting of 30 districts, it was founded by the Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro in 1535 as la Ciudad de los Reyes — the “City of Kings.” The name (chosen because the founding occurred on the Christian Epiphany) quickly fell into disuse, locals preferring the name Lima, which is believed by scholars to have been derived from the Quechua name for a well-known oracle, Limaq, located in one of the river valleys. (The Quechua people preceded the Incas in the valleys, and in the 15th century their remnants were incorporated into the Inca nation.) The oracle was later destroyed by the Spanish and replaced with a church, but its name persisted. Following the Peruvian War of Independence in 1821, Lima became the capital of the new republic.

Today, Lima is a principal financial and business center for South America (vying with São Paulo, Buenos Aires, Rio de Janeiro, Santiago and Caracas), accounting for two-thirds of Peru's industrial output. This is made possible by a large, high-quality workforce that either turns out or processes textiles, finished clothing and foodstuff (including fish) in more than 7,000 factories within the city, feeding one of the largest export trades on the continent from its seaport and Jorge Chavez Airport, itself a regional cargo hub. As is the case with many Latin American cities, despite this vibrant economy, Lima continues to reflect considerable poverty.

Lima's architecture is notable, as might be expected in a multicultural settlement in its sixth century, varying from Spanish colonial to ultra-modern themes. In addition to numerous museums and other cultural attractions, Lima claims to host more institutions of higher learning than any other city on the continent. This includes San Marcos University, the oldest continuously operating university in the Western Hemisphere, founded in 1551.

So if your visit permits, exercise the usual precautions on the street, and take a walk back into history. BCA

City at a Glance: Lima

City: Lima

Country: Republic of Peru

Status: Peruvian capital and largest city as well as a major financial center

Country visa requirement: Yes, for business. Crew members including cabin attendants require visas only if traveling within the country (i.e., on multiple flights to points in-country).

Landing permit requirement: Yes

Sponsor letter required: Yes, for business if bringing articles or products into the country for demo or sale

Aircraft documents required: Airworthiness certificate, registration, insurance certificate with country coverage. For charter flights, commercial operator's certificate. Additional documents may be required for small aircraft and ferry flights.

Any other requirements for visiting aircraft: No

Carbon trading requirement: No

ATC procedures: ICAO/Pans Ops

Any unique procedures: No

Altimetry: QNH

Metric or feet: Feet


WGS 84-compliant: Yes

Local navigator required: No


Name & ICAO identifier: Jorge Chavez International (SPIM)

Coordinates: 12o 01' 19”S 77o 06' 52”W

POE: Yes

Elevation: 113 ft.

Runways: 15/33, 11,506 ft. x 148 ft. wide

Slots: No

Curfew: No

FBOs: Swissport Executive, ATSA

Clear CIQ at: FBOs, with prior arrangement

Parking: Yes, at a designated general aviation ramp

Hangarage: On request

Fuel: Repsol Jet A1; Avgas

Credit: Fuel cards, contract fuel, credit arranged via handler

Maintenance: Contract maintenance available

Lav service: Yes

Catering: Arranged through handler or hotel

Fees: Landing, parking (approximately $25/hour), handling

Security: Available through private security firms

Ground Transportation: Limousines available

Distance and driving time to downtown: 10 km/6 sm, about 15 min. in traffic