On January 9, after a 25 hours (!) flight I arrived to Buenos Aires. Buenos Aires is a vibrant city with night life, a lot of traffic, bars and restaurants. The city looks very European. You could believe that you are in Madrid or Barcelona. I was wondering how well Argentina is going just ten years after the very deep economical crisis they underwent in 2001.
the whole city. You can get on and off whenever you want. The buses come every 20 – 30 minutes and have fixed stations. The stations are marked on a map that you get when you buy the ticket. An one day ticket costs 70 peso and a two days ticket 90 peso. I’ve bought a two days ticket. On the second day I’ve used the bus just to reach some places where the subte does not go (eg La Recoleta and San Telmo).
Visited Places in Buenos Aires
La Recoleta Cemetery
La Recoleta cemetery is one of the top sightseeing points in Buenos Aires. It has ca 4500 graves and most of these graves are built like a mausoleum or a greek temple. It is unbelievable to walk within a cemetery through a street with 5 m high buildings and impressive statues. On some of them there is a plate with the architect’s name like on a normal building. Amazing. Most of the tourists search for Evita’s Peron grave. She is burried there, however in the grave of the family Mendez. That’s why it’s difficult to find her grave. However if you see a crowd of tourists in front of a grave, go there, it’s probably her grave.I have loved the Recolta district too. Very pleasant.
Boca was founded by Italian immigrants. The most important building is obviously the soccer arena called “la bombonera” (the bonbon box). It is paint in the Swedish national colors because the first ship which arrived in the building year in the port was Swedish.
Some houses are very fancy paint apparently by using colors left after painting the ships. The sidewalks are very high (ca 50 cm) because of frequent water inundations in the past.
Unfortunately only two-three streets have been refurnished the rest seemed to me unsafe. Avoid leaving the touristic streets.
Complejo Pacifico – wonderful mall with an excellent food court on Florida and Corrientes. I ate there several times.
San Telmo. Plaza Darego is nice with a daily market and lots of antique shops. On Plaza Darego in the evening, street musicians and nice bars/restaurants.
El Ateneo is a wonderful bookstore at Santa Fe and Callao. It used to be a theatre and is now a bookstore now the people seat in the former boxes and read books. The english newspaper “The Guardian” ranked it the second nicest bookstore in the world.
The botanical garden at Santa Fe and Samiento is a green oasis with a lot of wonderful large trees in the middle of the rush hour traffic. (no entrance fee!!).
Viejo Palermonice and fancy district, similar to New York Soho.
Puerto Madera – newly built, trendy quarter by the sea with a lot of skyscrapers. The streets have names of women. Punte de La Mujer (Women’s Bridge) has been built by the spanish architect Calatrava and symbolizes a tango dancing couple. A lot of expensive restaurants by the water.
I attended a wonderful tango show at Complejo Tango . The dancers move sometimes their legs so fast that you even don’t see the motion. At the end of the show the dancers asked the spectators to dance with them. I was very glad that they didn’t ask me to do so.
Another wonderful place is Cafe Tortoni on on Av de Mayo 829 an amazing art nouveau coffee house totally in wood.
What I have liked in Buenos Aires
A lot of life, a lot of restaurants, bars, shops, a lot of traffic. A very vital city.
Wonderful old coaches in the subte (subway, see photo below).
What I have not liked in Buenos Aires
- A lot of poor people camping in nearly each park. They do not bother you (during the day) but you do not feel comfortable if you pass along with a 1000 euro camera.
- The rubbish on the street is being crawled by poor people in the middle of the street.
- I’ve heard from three different tourists who got robbed on the streets/in the parks by people using the “spitting-trick” in BA.