Lima, Peru Population

Population in Urban Area, now

10,789,671
  • World: 32nd
  • South America: 5th
  • Peru: 1st

Population in City Area, 2019-09-05

7,737,002
  • World: 22nd
  • South America: 3rd
  • Peru: 1st

Lima Urban Area Population Graph

Lima Population Review

The capital and largest city in Peru, Lima is home to an estimated 10.7 million people in the urban area and 7.7 in the city area. Located in the valleys of the Chillón, Rímac and Lurín rivers and overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Lima is the fifth-largest city in South America after São Paulo, Buenos Aires, Rio de Janeiro and Bogota. Following the Peruvian War of Independence in 1826, it became the capital of the Republic of Peru.

The metropolitan area of Lima is currently home to a third of Peru’s population. It is one of the thirty most populated urban agglomerations in the world and is the political, cultural, financial, and commercial centre of the country.

A desert city

Lima is located on a strip of desert land located between the Pacific Ocean and the Andes Mountains. Lima is actually the second largest desert city in the world, after Cairo in Egypt. However, Peru’s arid capital is facing a crisis. As climate change takes its toll, the city is beginning to run dry. There are roughly 1.2 million residents in Lima that are without running water and they rely on unregulated private water trucks that charge exorbitant rates to provide water.

With only a third of an inch of rain falling on the city annually, Lima relies heavily on glacier melt from the Andes. However, this is in serious jeopardy with ice levels in steady decline. With current trends, the watershed around Marcapomacocha that the city relies on heavily for water could run dry by the middle of the century.

High traffic congestion

During peak hours, the city suffers from high traffic congestion. With over 1 million vehicles in use on the roads in 2012 (and that number only increasing), Lima has 65% of the cars in the entire country. This results in traffic jams that can sometimes take hours to resolve. This can make getting around the city taxing for both locals and tourists.

The city has begun to offer economic incentives for municipalities to implement bicycle routes in their districts. It’s estimated that more than 1.5 million people used the bike lanes in 2012 and that the use of these bike lanes prevented the emission of over 526 tons of carbon dioxide. The district of San Borja was the first to implement a bike-sharing program. It supplied 200 bicycles in six stations across the district. The program has over 3,000 subscribers.

One of the oldest post-secondary institutions in the world

The National University of San Marcos was founded on May 12 in 1551, making it one of the oldest institutions of higher learning in the New World. It is both the first officially established and oldest continuously operating university in the Americas. It has 30,000 undergraduate students and 4,000 graduate students.

The catacombs beneath the San Francisco church

The San Francisco church and its monastery are famous for the catacombs that lay beneath them. The basement of the working monastery is home to the bones of 10,000 people that were interred there when it was Lima’s first cemetery. Mazes of narrow hallways are lined with bones that are arranged in artistic circles and designs. There are over 75,000 people ultimately buried under monastery and tours are open to the public. However, it’s not for the squeamish or for the claustrophobic.

A popular tourist attraction

In 2017, the Peruvian capital welcomed an estimated 2.35 million international, overnight visitors. It’s estimated that this figure will increase to 3.1 million visitors by 2025. There are 4 million tourists total that visit the city, with over 23 million passengers going through the Jorge Chávez International Airport. There are also multiple airlines offering domestic service between Peru’s cities.

Review Updated: October 2, 2020

Lima Urban Area Population History

1950 1,066,000
1951 1,120,000
1952 1,178,000
1953 1,238,000
1954 1,301,000
1955 1,368,000
1956 1,438,000
1957 1,512,000
1958 1,589,000
1959 1,670,000
1960 1,756,000
1961 1,846,000
1962 1,947,000
1963 2,053,000
1964 2,165,000
1965 2,284,000
1966 2,409,000
1967 2,540,000
1968 2,679,000
1969 2,826,000
1970 2,980,000
1971 3,143,000
1972 3,311,000
1973 3,435,000
1974 3,563,000
1975 3,696,000
1976 3,833,000
1977 3,976,000
1978 4,124,000
1979 4,278,000
1980 4,438,000
1981 4,603,000
1982 4,727,000
1983 4,853,000
1984 4,983,000
1985 5,116,000
1986 5,253,000
1987 5,393,000
1988 5,537,000
1989 5,685,000
1990 5,837,000
1991 5,992,000
1992 6,153,000
1993 6,317,000
1994 6,449,000
1995 6,582,000
1996 6,719,000
1997 6,858,000
1998 7,000,000
1999 7,145,000
2000 7,294,000
2001 7,445,000
2002 7,599,000
2003 7,756,000
2004 7,917,000
2005 8,081,000
2006 8,249,000
2007 8,420,000
2008 8,586,000
2009 8,751,000
2010 8,920,000
2011 9,092,000
2012 9,267,000
2013 9,445,000
2014 9,627,000
2015 9,813,000
2016 10,002,000
2017 10,194,000
2018 10,391,000
2019 10,555,000
2020 10,719,000

Lima Urban Area Population Projections

2021 10,883,000
2022 11,045,000
2023 11,204,000
2024 11,362,000
2025 11,517,000
2026 11,671,000
2027 11,822,000
2028 11,972,000
2029 12,120,000
2030 12,266,000
2031 12,411,000
2032 12,553,000
2033 12,695,000
2034 12,834,000
2035 12,972,000

Map of Lima, Peru

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