Buenos Aires, City of Fury
I was born in this magnificent city. At the age of 2, I moved to another country and four years later came back. After two years, we moved to the country-side and I returned in my early 20’s; fell in love, had my heart-broken, I changed life and skin a few times, broke through an unstoppable learning path, changed the city for the jungle in Costa Rica, and since then we kept a special relationship with the city itself. It feels like that ex with whom you are great friends and it even works better for both of you.
BUENOS AIRES, LA CIUDAD DE LA FURIA
This is a GREAT CITY! It is crazy how much it has to offer. So I recommend you take your time in really analyzing and setting your priorities before going. I know now is not the time to travel, so I will try to inform you and make you wander through this wonderful city in a virtual mode as much as possible.
I would start with places that you just cannot miss out on. So your Must-To-Go List should include Recoleta Cemetery, San Telmo and Caminito, Los Bosques de Palermo, Centenario Park, Palermo’s Nightlife, and all Historic Buildings such as The Casa Rosada, Congress, the Cathedral, and Plaza de Mayo and Plaza Congreso. This is just a Top-Places-List you should visit when going to Buenos Aires City.
SAN TELMO & CAMINITO, PURE TRADITION.
Each place has its vibe, tips, and timing I should say. I recommend starting your day early, enjoy a good “Cafe con Leche with Medialunas” (coffee with milk and Argentinian croissant). This is a traditional Argentinian breakfast, especially when being in the City Center.
I enjoy going in the mornings to San Telmo and walking through Caminito. You will find yourself surrounded by colorful small buildings with statues on their balconies. You will likely see people dancing the Tango in the streets and local music playing in every taproom.
This is a very touristy neighborhood. You can take a tour, or just hop on the 152 bus and get off where its route ends. You will see the river boarding the city; now in quarantine times, I have been told that fishes reappeared in this area of the river in San Telmo.
HISTORY’S SPECIAL SPOTS
I recommend you take the bus back to the city center and hop off at The Casa Rosada. The 152 stops behind it. Just start walking “up”. You will surround the Casa Rosada and find yourself in Plaza de Mayo. This is one of the main historical places in this city. So many people have walked through it and still do daily (or used to). Crazy to think that the same place has held thousands of people together, for too many and different causes, and now it is probably empty; with somewhat of a ghostly feeling. Still, it has endured being there for so many historical events, I will not even start counting them.
You can continue your walk through Avenida de Mayo up to Plaza Congreso and visit the Congress, or first go through Diagonal Norte to the Obelisk, walking by Avenida Corrientes until Callao and turn left until the Congress. I prefer walking through Corrientes because it is full of book stores and pizza places that are a must. It is tradition to stop at one of these pizza places and have a slice of Cheese Pizza with Faina “de dorapa” (de parado - which means standing). Yes, you can see people standing eating pizza, and continue the rush of their day.
Another option can be continuing through Diagonal, passing the Obelisk, and visit the Colon Theater. Another historical and famous artistic attraction to visit. Depending on your choice of preference you can continue through Avenida Corrientes or Avenida Rivadavia for more historical buildings and the traditional side of the city. For a more commercial walk, you might want to go and start walking by Avenida Santa Fe. You will see many shops and if you enjoy reading, you should stop at the Ateneo Book Store for some reading with a good cup of coffee.
Most like by now you also came across a few protests; do not panic. This is a daily regular for Argentinians and by now you might start to understand why it is called The City of Fury and its wonderful chaos/ “hermoso quilombo”.
PALERMO, A CLASSIC
Now it should be time to start thinking about dinner. Remember that Dinner Time in Argentina starts at 9:00 PM the earliest. You have places open from 6-ish in the afternoon and others all day. Know this: Argentinians are late eaters. A good spot with a variety of options is Plaza Serrano in Palermo. You can go there and start walking around. Palermo is full of bars, pubs, taverns, and gastronomic options to offer. Another starting point is Plaza Armenian also in Palermo, also within the area.
Moreover, you will see this big Avenue call Juan B. Justo. If you cross it, you will find yourself in another Palermo and more gastronomic options for you to choose from. This is why I emphasize planning the places you want to go to beforehand and avoid getting yourself overwhelmed. If it flows for a change of opinion on the spot fine, but this way you have an idea where to go.
PARKS, CULTURE & MORE
The second day in Buenos Aires I recommend you focus on Recoleta Cemetery and the Bosques de Palermo. This is all walkable distance, going from one park to another, you can go by the Arts Museum (MALBA), Plaza Francia, Japanese Garden, and maybe enjoy a picnic at the park or a nice meal at a restaurant in the area. The Bosques of Palermo is a big park and it has a few lakes you can enjoy sitting with a book. Sunsets here are truly something amazing and beautiful to see. You can see the colors in the sky and how all the city starts to light up its night version.
From here you can also go to a neighborhood called Las Cañitas for night dining.
LOCAL VIBES & NIGHTLIFE
If you are staying a few days in Buenos Aires, I recommend some other traditional scenes such as Parque Centenario for a walk; here there are usually cultural events since it has a small open theater within. For a more local-vibe, go to Boedo for a good Tango Show, and don't miss out on going for a walk at Buenos Aires’ Chinatown and Belgrano for some shop-walking.
On a higher note, things you must try when being in Argentina regarding local gastronomy:
- Milanesas (you have from meat to vegan options nowadays)
- Pastelitos Criollos
- Pastries in general
- Ice Cream
- Dulce de Leche
A classic on Monday evenings was La Bomba. This is a massive percussion show with years of trajectory. If you are looking for nightlife, that is a great starting point. Other places for night clubs, bars, and more would be Niceto Street (Niceto Club, Roxy, Makena, Carnal, amongst others) and Fitz Roy. This was my favorite neighborhood to walk around looking for that place with the vibe I was looking for at the time.
OTHER PLACES TO CONSIDER FOR DAY-TOURS
So that is usually my list of places to visit when I go to Buenos Aires. For Day-Tours from the city, I recommend you going to Tigre and its local market. As a second option, rent a bike or go for a walk through Vicente Lopez’s River Waterfront. Also, as a third option; I recommend you to go to Luján and visit The Basilica of Our Lady of Luján.
Other places you can add is the City’s River Waterfront in Puerto Madero. This is a lovely place to walk by, many restaurants, with a more fancy vibe as well. Great view of the city’s most modern buildings and here is the renowned Woman’s Bridge (Puente de la Mujer).
This city keeps a safe place in my heart forever. I was able to live my best years in it. Even though now I prefer to visit as a tourist, I look forward to the days I will walk the city’s streets with my children; showing them the buildings I used to live in, the streets I used to walk every day to go to work and share with them my story.
I hope you enjoyed this quick virtual walk through this magnificent city called Buenos Aires.
Live, Love & Laugh
A True Nomad- Sol Acevedo