Living in Peru can often have it´s downsides especially if you live in Lima, the terrible traffic, the loud honking, the constant littering, public urination, and carbon dioxide pollution are but just a few of the blemishes that are commonly mention among those living and travelling in Peru. Since we already know about the cons of life in Peru, I figured that I would highlight just one of the many pros to living in Peru.
Peruvian markets or mercados are huge component of Peruvian life and provide just about everything one could possibly need from fresh vegetables and fruits to poultry and meat to flowers and household products. What makes it even better are the reduced prices that one will pay in comparison to the more established supermarkets like Metro, Wong, Vivanda, and Plaza Vea. Finding a market in a Peruvian city isn´t usually to difficult either since it is usually a large concrete structure which has several individual stalls and stands both inside and sometimes around the outside perimeter of the complex. Peruvian markets are more than likely one of the most frequented urban location right after a bank or a restaurant.
Peruvian markets can either be generalized where just about anything can be found or they are specialized markets which are called centro comerciales, which can be dedicated to selling only electronics and clothing or hardware and construction materiales.
Those who have visited or lived in Lima will have already visited some of the many markets scattered throughout the city. Lima is recognized as having the largest per capita of markets and centro comerciales than any other city in the country. Here are just a few of the most popular Centro Comerciales in Lima.
Polvos Azules - located in the Center of Lima near Plaza Grau, next to the Via Expresa. The most popular market in Lima for just about anything.
Gamarra - located in the district of La Victoria and in between the streets of Av. Mexico and Av. Grau, before the infamous La Parada (would not recommend going unaccompanied). Great place to buy clothing or have it made.
Mercado Central de Lima - near the Av. Abancay in downtown Lima near La Victoria
La Cachina - In Lima on the Av. Argentina.
Mesa Redonda de Av. Argentina - on Av. Argentina, where you can get your cellphone fixed, unlocked, or but just about any phone that you can think of at a low price.
Centro Nicolini - on Av. Argentina across from Mesa Redonda and next to La Cachina. Sells everything that is construction materials, plumbing, electrical, tools, you name it.
Paruro de Mercado Central - Located in Mercado Central de Lima, is named after the street (calle) Paruro. Here you can get any electrical component for any electronic or audio device (e.g. fuses), also a great place to buy anything audio.
Granted this is not a complete list (of which I will have to put together eventually) but these are a few of the most popular and frequented locations.