Buenos Aires is the Mecca of Argentina with no shortage of things to do in the city, it is often referred to as the Europe of the Southern Hemisphere. Likened to that of Paris, or compared to the likes of Milan. Narrow one-way streets lined with tall timeless architecture shadowed by trees that look like they have been there a lifetime.
When you hear the words South America images of cartels and cocaine normally come to the forefront of the mind. That could not be further from the truth and even more so in Buenos Aires. It’s safe, clean and has an amazing social vibe full of passion and ease.
Flying 12 hours direct from Auckland New Zealand I spent two weeks in Buenos Aires, taking in all the sights but allowing my self-time to slow down and settle into the vibe. Here are my top 10 things to do in Buenos Aires.
1. Rooftop beers in Palermo
Palermo was my favourite suburb in Buenos Aires. I initially stayed here on the first few nights, went to other suburbs and then found myself back here. It is a very social and relaxing atmosphere, cobblestone streets are home to bars, restaurants and parks full of people walking dogs.
There are so many beautiful parks in Buenos Aires it was amazing. Here is the perfect place to have casual beers, eat amazing food and dance your way until sunrise if you are that way inclined.
2. Watch a sporting game
Being a kiwi, rugby is engrained in our culture. So of course when I see a New Zealand team is playing the local Jaguars course I’m going to go. If rugby is not your thing there are always football games on either or you will get a vibe for the wildness it is. Football more so.
Argentina has so much passion for sports and it shows making the game so much more entertaining. Plus coming from New Zealand just going to see the crazy barriers put in place to keep people off the field is enough.
3. Recoletta Cemetary
Recoletta Cemetary was wild. The sheer scale and size are unbelievable. Recoletta Cemetary was a burial place for the rich, famous and upper class including war heroes, politicians and anyone with high social status.
The tombs range from human-sized tombstones to 2 story extravagant buildings with statues. It can be quite confronting, you can peer through and see coffins, so close you could touch them. This is something you need to see to believe.
4. El Ateneo
El Ateneo was once named the most beautiful bookstore in the world by National Geographic and its easy to see why. Located only a short walk from Recoleta Cemetary.
El Ateneo seems lowkey from the outside and just looks like any other building but once you walk in the old theatre quickly becomes a book lovers dream. A huge circular like building lined with books and a cafe if you want to sit in the heart of it and sip on a coffee… or matte.
5. San Telmo
The Famous market located in the centre of Buenos Aires. San Telmo Market has a unique vibe that you cannot find anywhere else in the city, you can walk in through multiple entries dependant on the direction you are coming from.
Once you are inside you can be treated to anything you desire. If you are here to do your daily shopping there are countless store with fresh meat and produce. Or if you are just visiting grab a freshly roasted coffee and take in the vibes.
6. Day in Tigre
Tigre is a popular weekend getaway for the people of Buenos Aires. Located only an hour away, it’s easy to jump on the train from any of the multiple stops in the city.
All you will need is a metro card which you can get from any kiosk. Tigre is a nice break from the hustle of the big city, a town built on a network of rivers. get a boat tour and cruise around the rivers to get a feel for the place or simply relax along the riverside and watch the world go by.
7. Walk the streets
Sounds simple I know, but I have done this mostly every day. Just walk outside and go for a walk you will be surprised what you will find. The city has a beautiful architecture which can be likened to that of Europe.
Tall apartment-like buildings lining the streets with aged trees towering over you and a surprising amount of dogs running around always make it a peaceful activity.
8. Argentian BBQ
Steak and wine. That is all I heard about Buenos Aires before I left New Zealand. There is so much more to the city than that, but you simply cannot visit Buenos Aires and not have ann Argentinian BBQ with a wine in hand.
The experience is amazing, the meat is somehow the best you will ever have and the wine is cheap. We had a full out meal for two, plus a bottle of wine and it only cost around $40NZD. The same back home would have been upwards of $150.
9. Mujer Bridge
This is also known as the old pointy bridge of Buenos Aires. This is also found in the heart of the city where al the crazy big and bold government buildings and banks are located.
It looks beautiful from a distance and walking over it is also a treat. You can go during the day or it is lit up at night if you want a different experience.
The colourful neighbourhood located in La Boca, La Boca itself is one of Buenos Aires sketchiest neighbourhoods as we were soon to find out. Caminito is a few streets that are lined with buildings covered in rainbow-like colours. Although on its own this is amazing the popularity is not.
It is easily one of the most crowded destinations in Buenos Aires and has been 100% exploited for tourism. Go early morning or late evening to avoid the crowds and expect to be hustled.
Although these are my top 10 favourites I guarantee that you will find a lot more that you personally like, so there is only one more thing to do! Get on a plane and go see it for yourself!