Tourist has been growing in Buenos Aires starting 2002. There are plenty of cultural activities available including watching tango shows, but the capital is also very popular among shoppers. Churches, museums and squares complete the city’s unique atmosphere.
Buenos Aires, Argentina’s capital is located on the shore of the Río de la Plata, on the southeastern coast of South America. Its official name is Autonomous City of Buenos Aires. In Spanish, Buenos Aires means “fair winds”.
How to get to Buenos Aires
Ezeiza International Airport (IATA: EZE) receives most of the international traffic in the country as well as some domestic traffic. There are non stop flights to North America, Europe, Australia, Asia and Africa. The airport is located at about 30-45 min from the city center. The cheapest way to get to the city center is on 86 bus but it takes almost 2 hours to get to Mayo square. If you speak some Spanish you can find a taxi and share it with fellow travelers.
There are national railways but the service is not recommended for travelers (there aren’t many connections). But you can drive to Buenos Aires from anywhere in South America. There are four highways entering the city and the most important routes are centered in the capital.
Buses also link the capital to the rest of the country and they are quite comfortable. However, some travel times can be really long (i.e. Mendoza: 13-17 hours or Córdoba: 9 hours) so if you don’t like to travel by bus for that long you should better choose another alternative.
Ferries connect Buenos Aires to Uruguay and the freighter connects Argentina with Europe twice a month.
The capital has a humid subtropical climate, with the hottest month being January and the coldest July. The city does receive rainfall but not very often. The latest however was in 2007. During summer (December to February), because of the heat, many locals prefer to leave the capital and head to the coast.
Jan:avg high 29C/85F; avg low 17C/64F
Jul:avg high 14C/58F; avg low 5C/41F
What to do
If you love a green city and like to spend an active vacation, don’t miss Palermo, a beautiful area in the eastern part of the city. You can stroll and even go on the lake and rent paddle boats. Enjoy the flower garden as you enter the area. If you want to walk and enjoy the street life, don’t miss El Puerto de Buenos Aires, a really nice area for walking both during the day and night.
Don’t miss the Caminito pedestrian in La Boca area. It’s a lovely area with arts and crafts. You can see tango dancers in this area as well. The area is also famous for football (soccer) so you might want to visit La Bombonera Stadium.
A word of advice about La Boca though: everything is twice or thee times more expensive than in the city. The area has been “made” to cater for the tourists but it still has a nice charm to it …if you like to feel like a tourist.
If you really want to experience Tango, check out the Milongas. There’s a magazine in Buenos Aires called “El Tangauta” and it’s pretty much the “bible” of everything related to Tango. It gives you information where you can see tango or learn tango.
But Buenos Aires is not all about tango and football. The city’s landmarks include:
- Obelisk (Obelisco): the city’s icon and the venue for many events
- 9 de Julio Avenue: the widest avenue in the world
- Buenos Aires Metropolitan Cathedral: the main catholic church in the capital
- Plaza de Mayo: the main square; several landmarks are located around it
If you want to blend in with the locals, make sure to check out the markets. Saturdays and Sundays are the perfect days to explore the outdoor markets. At the Feria Recoleta (in Plaza Francia) you can find anything you want, while at Plaza Serrano in Palermo Viejo you can find very interesting clothing.
Try the local cuisine and don’t be surprised to find Italian and Spanish restaurants pretty much everywhere. Beef is kind here but you can also get some of the best pizza outside Italy.