I had the lucky opportunity this week to spend several days exploring Buenos Aires. Named “The Paris of South America” for good reason, Argentina’s capital is architecturally beautiful and humming with activity.
On your first morning, make sure to start the day off right with your medialuna and coffee. Shaped like a half moon, hence the name, the medialuna tastes like a very buttery, sweet croissant, with a strong hint of vanilla. Good ones are slightly crispy on the outside but very soft on the inside and you can get them filled with anything but the classic ham and cheese is probably the most popular.
Buenos Aires has a host of notable sites to visit. The most unique certainly has to be the Recoleta Cemetery, where Argentina’s most wealthy and famous have been buried since 1822. It is a maze of beautifully decorated above ground mausoleums. But what makes it so interesting is the character of each; some are well kept, some abandoned, some large, some small, some have thirty bodies, some have just one occupant. Interestingly, the most famous tomb in the complex is one of the simplest, easy to miss, especially since it is for the surname “Duarte.” But, of course, there is always a little crowd to mark the spot, the resting place of the iconic Evita Peron.
Beyond the Recoleta Cemetery, a good touring itinerary will also include the Teatro Colon, perhaps the most beautiful theater in South America, the old presidential palace, the Casa Rosada, and the Museo D’Evita. However, Buenos Aires is a walking city, a meanderer’s paradise, so just hopping from site to site in a bus would really be to miss the point. One of my favorite experiences was spending five hours walking from the Palermo Soho neighborhood’s Plaza Serrano, where there was a lovely local art fair, to the Museo D’Evita, then across the wealthy Recoleta districts’ parks to National Art Museum, then down the city’s largest boulevard to the Teatro Colon, over to the Casa Rosada, Playa Mayor, and the historic Café Tortoni, and finally to a few hours exploring the antique shops of San Telmo and the beautiful, colorful buildings of La Boca.
Along the way, make stops, have a coffee, enjoy.
And, of course, its Argentina, so don’t forget to have an excellent steak. Pretty much any good restaurant in the city will have one!