The Ultimate Buenos Aires Cityguide



General Information 


Buenos Aires with its 13 Million habitants is one of the biggest cities in South America. The city is also called "La capital" and a lot of people say, that Buenos Aires can't be compared to the rest of Argentina. Indeed there is a big difference between B.A and the provinces outside of La Capital. Buenos Aires is in a lot of ways, more modern, more accepting and more western then the rural areas are. 

But what is Buenos Aires known for? Buenos Aires is not a Tourist Magnet as Rio de Janeiro, Patagonia or  Machu Picchu might be. Buenos Aires has its own flair. People would say Buenos Aires is by far the most western city of south America. But actually, besides the architecture, that could be out of France or Spain, I don't see where the capital would be that European. The people dress differently , they act differently and they can definitely not be compared to Europeans. 
Buenos Aires is a huge city, it feels like every neighborhood is a little city in a city. The neighborhoods are so diverse. At Puerto Madero you might thing you are in London or Hamburg, while you thing you are in a little, cute town in south of France when entering Recoleta. People here are nice, interested and easy going.
Puerto Madero
It is the perfect city if you want a (safe) Metropolitan place, with a lot of things to see and do. Safety in general here is not that big of a problem as people might say. Of course when you follow easy safety rules. But it is not a problem to explore the city on your own as a women. Just get informed which parts you should avoid. But in the two months here, I never got into any trouble, besides some people whistling or calling after me. But that is part of the culture. 
Buenos Aires is known for its nightlife, the culture, the vibrant city.

How to get here

Buenos Aires has two main Airports. Ezeiza for international and local flights and the Aeroparque for national flights. From Ezeiza you can get to the city center by bus. I took Tienda Leon and bought the tickets in the arrival hall. They drop you off at your house when you give them the direction. 
Another way to get here is with the bus. The most popular ones are Andemas and Cata International. They drop you of at Retiro from where you can take the Metro. 


Neighborhoods

Recoleta 
Recoleta is known for the beautiful Recoleta Cementery and its known for its nice south european looking buildings. You could easily walk around, have a stop at the handcraft market before going to the cemetery. Afterwards you could stop at the Mall, get some Ice cream and drink something at one of Recoletas nice cafes. 

Puerto Madero 
Puerto Madero is like a totally different city. With its huge skyscrapers, the River, the modern buildings, the expensive restaurants and the Puente de Mujer. 
A afternoon here could start with a walk at the river over the bridge strolling around the Skyscraper. It could end at the ecological reserva that is by far the most nature you will see in Buenos Aires. It is a huge nature reservat with beautiful views. 

Balvanera
Balvanera is the neighborhood I live in. Some people say it is kind of "dangerous". But I don't really think that. There is the trainstation "Once" that you should probably avoid, but the northern you go in Balvanera, the safer it is. The Barrio is full of little shops. There will be some streets where there just sell textiles, others where every shop offers party equipment, then you will find streets with a bunch of stores just selling mannequins. You can find everything in this neighborhood. On the streets you will find people selling fake Adidas yogapants or Rayban Imitates. It is a busy neighborhood during the day. During the night its totally dead. There is nothing going on. I try not to leave later as ten in the evening. But even when I jog back from the Gym I go to at nine, it is not unsafe. 


La Boca
This neighborhood is probably known for the colorful street. I personally thing it is totally overrated. You have three touristy streets, with some colorful buildings, overpriced food and people trying to get your money from posing with tangodancers. 
The Footballstadium is some streets away, but besides that, there is nothing interesting about the place. It is also not the safest to walk around during the night, but even during the day its not that big of a problem if you explore a bit outside. Maybe try not to be alone, but normally its not that unsafe as people say during the daytime. You should still keep an eye on your belongings.

                                          San Telmo 
The thing that comes to my mind here is the "Feria de San Telmo". A huge market where you can buy basically everything you need. I got my Mate tea cup here. It is a nice place to go on a Sunday. You can also chill at the Park at the end of the Feria. Once a month you will find the food market there. (You can check the date son the facebook site Buenos Aires Market)
In San Telmo you can easily find nice cafes and places to chill. 






Palermo 
Palermo is by far the most popular place to go for nightlife. You can divide Palermo into Soho, Hollywood, viejo and alto. Palermo soho is in the south eastern part of Palermo. You will find great cafes, a lot of nightclubs, nice buildings, good restaurants. Its the place to be if you want to spend an afternoon and night in a beautiful neighborhood. Its young, chic and trendy. 
In Hollywood you will also find good places to celebrate, shop or eat out. It has a bit of a Los Angeles flair. 


 What to see & Do


The top things to do in Buenos Aires - touristy

1) Plaza Mayo 
2) Obelisco


3) La Boca 



4) Recoleta Cementary


5) Punta de Mujeres
6) Casa Rosada
7) Teatro Colon
8) Planetarium
9) Floraris Generica


10) Calle Florida
11) Plaza de Congreso
12) Botanical Garden
13) Feria de San Telmo
14) Cafe Tortoni

The top things to do in Buenos Aires - locals activities

1) Reserva Ecologica



2) Bosque de Buenos Aires
3) Coffeshops in Palermo Soho
4) Visiting Tigre 
5) Parque Lezama
6) El Alteneo


Where to stay

I have my own place at a international House. So I never had the need to look for Hostels. But in general it should not be to hard to find something. The by far most popular Hostels are the Millhouse hostels. Known for its activity and vibrant nightlife. For the fiestas and the social vibe. 
Easiest place to search for is Hostelworld.com
Prices start at 10 during the off season and rise up to 25 at the main season (Dez-March).
If you plan to stay long term you could look at those inrernational houses. Prices start at 300 Dollars per months. You can find them om Craiglist.com. 

Public Transportation

Public Transportation is not that easy. Before you can use it you need to by a SUBE Card. You find those at Kiosks. It cost 20 pesos for the card and then you load it. 
Bus coast around 6.25 and Metro 4.50. 
The metro system is very easy. Unfortunately it doesn't go to all the places you want to see. So you might need to take the Bus. This is more tricky. There are official bus stops, but often its just a number on a streetlight. Also if you want them to stop to pick you up, you need to get attention by holding up your arm when they come by. Then you need to tell the driver where you want to get off. And you need to know exactly where you want to get off, because nobody will tell you about the next stop. 
Best thing is to download the app: "Como LLego". Life saver. 

How to be Argentinian


If you want to be really Argentinian you should try Assado. The Argentinian BBQ. With a lot of meat and Choripan. 
You will find Choripan at every street corner. Its bread with meat. Topped with Chimichuri, onions and tomatoes. It is amazing apparently, can't tell because I am a Vegetarian. 
Also buy a Mate Tea cup and the straw. You find the Mate in every supermarket. Fill your cup half full with Mate. Then put in the straw. Put hot water in and do not mix it with the straw. 
Try out some Fernet with coke. Kind of the national drink for partys. 
Eat late, party late and wake up late. 
Tango is not that popular as I thought it would be. I have been to classes but its not like everyone here knows how to dance. I have to say the Argentinian people I hang out with kind of laugh when I tell them I dance Tango. I think you really must be into it to do it. 


Nightlife

The nightlife here is vibrant and fun. As a local you often have a "previa" at around 11 and you leave for a club or bar around 2. People here go out late. Never expect anyone to come to a party at eleven. I have been to Fiestas where people show up at three in the morning. 

There are a lot of good places to party. Its hard to list all of them. So here I will write down some places  I went to. 

Boliches in Buenos Aires:

Rosebar is a popular club, where you sometimes need to sign up online to get onto the list. Its one of the nicer clubs with better music and chicer people. 
Brooke is a huge club with two floors. They mostly play Reggeaton and not even the good one. There are way to much people, no space for dancing and guys will likely try to hit on you all the time. Not my favorite club. 
Niceto and Kika are popular clubs in Palermo. Expect long lines of people during the Weekend. 
I have been to some other places, but I cannot really remember where they have been or what they where called. As I have a lot of time here, I am not focused on trying out all the super popular clubs in the city, so I often just hang at bars or little clubs. 




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