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Buenos Aires Argentina

Buenos Aires (official name Autonomous City of Buenos Aires, also called Capital Federal ) is the capital of the Argentine Republic. The name means fair winds in Spanish. It is one of the largest cities in LatinAmerica, with a lot of cultural offerings, and is the point of departure for travelling to the rest of the country. Inhabitants of Buenos Aires are called porteños, "people from the port". Buenos Aires is a singular, open and integrating destination that allows the visitor not only to view the city but also to live an exceptional urban adventure.

The city is geographically contained inside the province of Buenos Aires, but it is politically autonomous. Its coordinates are 34º 36' S, 58º 26' W.

The city extends on a plain covering 19.4 kilometers (12 miles) from north to south and 17.9 kilometers (11 miles) from east to west.

Approximately three million people live in the City of Buenos Aires (the Federal Capital of Argentina with 202 square kilometers equivalent to 78.3 sq miles). The City is divided into 48 districts or barrios. Together with its metropolitan area or Great Buenos Aires (Gran Buenos Aires) this is one of the ten most populated urban centers in the world with over 14 million people. Most of the country's activity is highly concentrated in this single city and its surroundings.

Buenos Aires constantly receives tourists from all over the world and offers a large choice cultural events, nightlife, restaurants and pubs, so you can expect good services and a wide range of options.

Buenos Aires has also one of the largest homosexual communities in Latin America and there is a liberal attitude towards gay society. Within Capital Federal gay couples can form a legal civil partnership. Following the economic recovery, in recent years there has been an increase in gay-friendly businesses such as real estate, apartment rental, travel agents, language classes, tango classes, bars, restaurants, hotels and guesthouses. Year 2007 has seen arrivals of more gay cruise ships, the opening of a gay 5-star hotel and a general increase in gay tourism.


The City of Buenos Aires has 48 districts called barrios. The most important and visited are:

  • Microcentro Downtown financial and administrative heart of the city.
  • San Telmo
  • La Boca The sketchy but-up-and-coming area whose boutiques and restaurants are best visited during the day.
  • Palermo Hip residential neighborhood of tree-lined streets and intersections packed with restaurants and bars.
  • Recoleta Home to the rich and the dead-- mansions and the huge Recoleta Cemetery.
  • Belgrano
  • Boedo
  • Caballito
  • San Cristobal
  • Puerto Madero The newly developed waterfront district
  • Retiro



Central Buenos AiresIf you are a fan of walking in open green spaces and parks in big cities like Buenos Aires, be sure not to miss a promenade in Palermo, a beautiful area in the eastern part of the city. Here you will not only find open spaces to walk in, but a large lake where you can rent paddle boats and an immense flower garden with free entry!

Another great place to walk along and experience Argentine street life in a safe area (during the day only, folks - interesting characters emerge here at night!) is El Puerto de Buenos Aires.

The National Immigration Museum is not open on the weekends like Moon Guidebooks says. Use the Retiro subte.

La Boca has the Caminito pedestrian street with arts and crafts. There is also a river cruise you can take from there. There is a huge metal structure across the river which is picturesque. Tango dancers are in the cobblestone streets. You may try to catch a rowboat to Avellaneda on the other side of the water for 0.50 pesos (0.125 euros), but the rower may not allow you to if you are a tourist, citing it's dangerous (peligroso). There is no subte to La Boca, but many buses go there. In addition to tango, La Boca is famous for its football, and you may also take a tour of the La Bombonera Stadium. The buildings are painted in bright colors. You can also take pictures with you and a tango dancer for a small price! But if you want a true tango experience that is not put on a sliver platter for a European or American tourist, read below and experience the true Buenos Aires Tango experience.

The prices for most everything in La Boca is 2 to 3 times what it is in the rest of the city. It's been over tourist-ified, but is enjoyable if you just feel like being a tourist. Don't even think about coming here at night. It's safe during daytime in the Caminito neighborhood.

The Cementerio de la Recoleta: This is where all the rich families in Buenos Aires have their final resting places, usually in above the ground tombs. Check out the calico cats who have haunted the cemetary for generations. Be sure to visit the tomb of Eva Perón, the bastard daughter of an aristocrat who, despite having the most visited tomb in the cemetery, is considered by many to be too "low class" for eternal interment in Recoleta.

The Palermo Viejo district: This is a trendy neighborhood with charming cobblestone streets, bookstores, bars and boutiques; definitely better than the touristic San Telmo area for a nightime excursion. The Plaza Italia station is the closest metro stop.

More information is available at the Buenos Aires official tourism website, including suggested itineraries.


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