After living in the “Paris of South America” (aka Buenos Aires) for merely a month, I am working hard to squeeze in some studying! One of my first personal goals in the adjustment to living here is to experience something new at least once a week (which is beyond easy to do here by the way!). There is an unbelievable amount of museums, plazas, parks and everything else in between; after all, this is the capital city, and there is such a wealth of culture and history to experience. Therefore, in this blog I decided to give a very typical example of how my friends and I spend our free time here and try to demonstrate how entertaining daily life really can be. That being said, I give you a daily guide for a very (above-average) average week in the City of Good Air.
Monday – La Bomba De Tiempo
This improvisational percussion group gives an awesome performance every Monday night at the Konex Cultural Center, a cooking oil factory turned concert venue. Sounds bizarre, but this is a truly entertaining event to attend with friends and to meet young, fun laid-back locals. The band plays for a couple of hours and some of the members even hang out afterwards and socialize. Pretty neat!
Tuesday – Carlos Thays Botanical Garden
El Jardín Botánico Carlos Thays, with its urban location, is a great break from the chaotic city life. It’s great to simply walk through, but they also host many events and aim to maintain biodiversity and provide environmental education to the community. Declared a National Monument n 1996, this garden is of great importance to this city and a must-see for tree-hugging visitors.
Wednesday – Museo Evita
This beautiful museum, dedicated to the life of Eva Perón and housed in a mansion in the neighborhood of Palermo, was once used for refuge for single mothers with children. The tour provides a thorough look into Eva Perón’s rise, influence and how she came to be both loved and hated by Argentina. There’s also an adorable patio café located behind it. Entrance fee is only about $3 U.S. — worth it!
Thursday – Tango Class at La Viruta
Perfect place for a Tango dance class and a great place to meet locals! $10 U.S. gets you in the door for the night. Come as early as you like, and take as many classes as you’d like. There’s also a great restaurant and at the end of the night the experts put on a show for everyone.
Friday – Parrilla
Parrilla is a completely unavoidable tradition here in Buenos Aires. Although there are literally hundreds of these grilling establishments, my friends and I took a liking to a place called Miranda. Maybe it’s because our server was extremely attractive, but nonetheless, the food was pretty commendable. Parrillas are basically restaurants that offer a wide variety of grilled meats and vegetables. Very traditional, and considering Argentina is known for beef quality, do not miss out on this!
Saturday – Mate in the park
On the weekends many of the parks are filled with young locals hanging out having picnics and drinking mate. This is a fun (and affordable) way to enjoy the weather here and, once again, meet locals. You can buy mate pretty much anywhere; although if you make friends you may be invited to join a mate circle and share. This is a very traditional social event in Argentina. People will be doing all kinds of entertaining activities so this provides great exposure to local culture.
Sunday – Recoleta Market
The Recoleta Market is the perfect option for a relaxing afternoon of shopping and sightseeing. Hundreds of artisans come out to sell their wares, and there is also plenty of live music and local foods to try like choripán, grilled chorizo sandwiched between rustic bread. Seriously delish! This is also a great opportunity to tour the famous Recoleta Cemetery (where Eva Peron and other famous Argentines are buried) and the beautiful Pilar Church.