“Chances are, other people you meet traveling alone are going to be incredibly interesting people.”
Never did I suspect Buenos Aires to become my absolute favorite city in South America, but it is a cultural hub with many hidden treasures. My flight in was a bit harrowing, and after one lost bag, an hour trying to get store tenders to change my cash into coins for the bus (buses only take coins!!), and a two-hour ride to the city center I finally made it to my hostel. But after my initial travel distress, I had a fabulous time in this Argentinian cultural hub. One of the reasons my stay in this town was so fantastic was due to my hostel! It’s called “Portal Del Sur,” and is right next to Plaza de Mayo giving you immediate access to the subway hub and bus system to get around the city. Some of the things I like best about this hostel include the chill crowd of travelers who do not feel the need of constant partying, an excellent hangout area and bar, and nightly activities including tango lessons and mate tea tastings!
After settling in and making some new travel buddies, it was time to explore the city. One reason I like this city is that is entirely walkable if you’re up to it! So grab a map from the hostel reception desk and set off on an adventure Bilbo Baggins style! The city has tons to offer in the way of museums and gardens, all of the shopping you could need on Florida street, and make sure you cross the widest avenue in the entire world “9 de Julio” where you can also take in the the giant homage to Eva Perón painted on the skyscraper overlooking the avenue. I was there during the World Cup, so whenever a game was on I would dip into a pub, grab a beer, and cheer for whoever the crowd favorite was. I particularly loved watching Columbia play, and was devastated when they fell out of the league.
1) San Telmo Market: On every Sunday, the street vendors bust out the best of their wares and line up and down the streets of Defensa, Bolivar, Estados Unidos, and Carlos Calvo. Originally it started as a produce market, but the tradition has expanded to include all types of inquiries: vintage clothing, handmade crafts, antiques, furniture, and the most beautiful and exciting jewelry you can find in the world! Mark your Entire Sunday for the market and the market only, as it will take you several hours to take in its magnificence.
2) Cementerio de la Recoleta: This is a massive cemetery located in the Recoleta district, and houses the graves of some of the most prominent people in Argentinian history. I know, kind of creepy way to spend your afternoon, but it is worth it! The many alleys of mausoleums have an eerie beauty about them, and the ornamental statues built over most of the graves are some of the coolest sculptures in the city! Around 1:00 pm has the best light for taking photos, and tours start at 11:00 am.
3) Palermo: This is my favorite neighborhood in Buenos Aires, with its cobbled streets and air of antiquity. It’s downtown central, with hipster cafes, book shops and eclectic shopping experiences you can only find here. I enjoy just walking through the area because it has a quiet aura set aside from the city life. If you’re still around during the night hours, Palermo is the center of nightlife, so go bar hopping and dip into your occasional club.