Our original plan was to fly from Bogota into Rio de Janeiro in time for Christmas but lagging visas and the very strong Brazilian Real had us rethink that last minute. We decided to skip Brazil this trip and head straight to Buenos Aires, Argentina figuring we could really use the extra time to explore the second largest land mass in South America.
Buenos Aires lived up to its reputation for being the Europe of South America. Beautiful neighborhoods (Retiro is amazing), chic shops, large parks and plazas. Its a wonderful mix of old and new and the porteños are proud of it. On the other hand there’s the glaring issue of trash and litter which most people simply ignore. Just watch your step! Generally speaking, its no wonder why tourists flock to this capital city. Now in terms of Argentinian cuisine, we were left wanting much, much more. We did arrive during Christmas when many stores and restaurants were closed for the holiday and on top of this there was a city wide meat shortage so to be fair we were handicapped from the start. Good meat was hard to find but at least we had maté and lots of terrific inexpensive wine. Thankfully there’s more to enjoy than just Malbec. To be fair we’ll have to go back when at least one of the most recommended restaurants is open - Cafe San Juan in San Telmo, we shall return!
In the meanwhile, Here’s a retrace of our some of our steps and my short list of things to do and see:
- take the free walking tour of downtown. super informative
- skate or bike around Parque 3 de Febrero on a weekend. great people watching
- take a tango class, its great exercise and a national pastime
- visit the Recoleta cemetery and get there early.
- take a walk down Puerto Madero or further south along the Ecologic Reserve
- Eat a medialuna. Drink lots of wine.
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