Purpose: The purpose of this study is to analyse Peruvian cuisine in the context of visitors’ overall experience, focusing on the loyalty of tourists in terms of gastronomy, their satisfaction with the destination, and the overall image. Design/methodology/approach: Data were obtained from tourists who visited Lima (Peru). Structural equation modeling was used to verify the hypothesized relationships. Findings: The results obtained confirm that satisfaction and appreciation, such as quality, have a positive influence on tourists’ loyalty and, therefore, they recommend and express their desire to come back to this destination. The traditional gastronomy of Lima stands out as a prominent factor on overall experience. Research limitations/implications: This paper helps the managers of cities in their decisions to improve the satisfaction and seek loyalty of those who visit a city, emphasizes the role of gastronomy. Practical implications: The results obtained in this research can be used for the establishment of new strategies for the promotion of the destination in terms of tourism and traditional food. Originality/value: The gastronomy in Lima, (Peru) is recognized worldwide, as well as a stimulus for tourism because it increases the number of visits to the destination. Several studies carried out in these types of destinations have shown the existence of a relationship between gastronomy, overall experience, satisfaction and loyalty. However, there are no previous studies carried out in Lima that sustain this relationship. This work makes a contribution that completes the academic literature on the study of the emotional bonds between Peruvian gastronomy and the tourist who visits it and its behaviour.