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Trip report. Just got home. Nine great days in BsAs!

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Los Angeles...
posts: 111
reviews: 29
Trip report. Just got home. Nine great days in BsAs!

Howdy all, and thanks to the many posters here whose advice and reports helped us plan our trip.

My wife and I rented an apartment in San Telmo, right across Humberto Primo from Plaza Dorrego. Talk about being right in the middle of the action! Lots going on all the time, and tango in the plaza every day.

The Argentine peso is worth about 25 cents US, so everything was wonderfully affordable--meals, good, cheap red wine, ice cream, chocolates, pastries, taxis, admissions to museum. Made for a fun trip. I overtipped just for the fun of it.

Never had a moment's concern about safety or crime. My wife and I are both in our mid-60s. Pretty experienced travelers. We follow the common precautions on jewelry, etc.

In the San Telmo area we saw women (single, in pairs) walking home, etc., on the street at 10:30 to 11 p.m. without concerns. I would rate it a safe neighborhood, altho I know other posters were have different feelings. But we were never concerned.

Our best meal was probably at Sotto Voce in Puerto Madero. Nice water view, wonderful service, fine food. And at prices that made you feel like a bandit. At least by US/European standards.

We also ate well at Taberna Baska, El Viejo Rotisery and Le Continental, all in San Telmo.

We went to DesNivel, too... just OK....way too popular with tourists...El Viejo had a much more local feel and customers.

One important thing I learned too late:

The Argentines may have the world's best beef, but they overcook it!

You'll get tastless, brown shoe leather in a lot of parilladas unless you ask for rare or medium rare, and insist on it. "Bien cocido" (well done) is a cultural thing when it comes to meat, i learned later in Mendoza.

A couple of places that we enjoyed:

La Confideria Ideal, in the late afternoon/evening, to see how real tango is danced. None of this overly stylized tourist stuff. We went on a Friday and were the only tourists out of maybe 200-250 people. It's a great old building. The dancing is on the second floor. It's a peak BsAs experience, i think.

We went from La Confiteria to Florida Street, to shop for souvenirs among all the street hawkers. Very fun.

The feria on Sunday in San Telmo is not to be missed....gotta be the world's biggest flea market/"hippie fair." Great fun.

Check out Puerto Madero, especially the Puente de la Mujer (it rotates!) and the Fragara Sarmiento. A ways away from the there, hidden away and hard to find, is the Immigration Museum. A great look at how a country should treat its immigrants.

When you get into the airport (EZE), you can forget Nacion Bank. It had a long slow line to change money. I ducked over to a nearby cambio..so it costs a little more, but it's worth saving 30 minutes or more. …

.

Also, we went to Colonia, Uruguay, but I would suggest skipping it, mainly because of the hassle of getting there on the Buquebus, long lines at both ends....it consumes a long day that you can better spend elsewhere. Colonia, the old historic part is tiny, with only a little to see.

But if you do go, don’t buy the Buquebus lunch and tour package…it's expensive and it's not a good restaurant, and the tour is not needed…get a cab at the waterfront and you're set.

Anyway, we had a delightful nine days bopping around lovely Buenos Aires, and have already recommended it friends.

From BsAs we went to Mendoza, and had a fine stay there. I'll try to get a trip report on that leg soon.

Again, thanks to all of you who help guide we tourists to your fun city.

Buenos Aires...
Destination Expert
for Buenos Aires
posts: 16,155
reviews: 14
1. Re: Trip report. Just got home. Nine great days in BsAs!

Wonderful ! So glad you enjoyed your stay !

I look forward to reading about Mendoza too :)

Thank you for posting ~

Toronto, Canada
posts: 918
reviews: 90
2. Re: Trip report. Just got home. Nine great days in BsAs!

Thanks for posting. We're going to BA in late February and are really looking forward to our trip.

Buenos Aires
Destination Expert
for Province of Cordoba
posts: 1,931
reviews: 10
3. Re: Trip report. Just got home. Nine great days in BsAs!

Hello LANewsboy !!

I'm very glad to hear that you've had a good time here,, thanks for posting your report.

Yes,, about the meat "bien cocida",,, I'm argentinian and I do know that my taste is different from the general tourists taste. I cannot eat the meat juicy. May be its a cultural point, as you say.

Thank you again

Silvia

houston
posts: 112
reviews: 32
4. Re: Trip report. Just got home. Nine great days in BsAs!

Thanks for the trip report; we are looking forward to our trip in BA starting next wknd and all the things you mention are on our list. So glad to hear of your time there!

Sydney
posts: 230
reviews: 27
5. Re: Trip report. Just got home. Nine great days in BsAs!

Thanks for the great report. We're going in Feb and can't wait. Can you tell me more about the Tango place that you went to? How did you hear about it, how do you get there etc. It sounds great, I'm also more interested in seeing something less touristy.

Abilene, Texas
Destination Expert
for Buenos Aires
posts: 7,014
reviews: 65
6. Re: Trip report. Just got home. Nine great days in BsAs!

Confiteria Ideal is in downtown Buenos Aires. Here is a link to the web site.

http://www.confiteriaideal.com/public/

Sydney
posts: 230
reviews: 27
7. Re: Trip report. Just got home. Nine great days in BsAs!

Thanks.

Los Angeles...
posts: 111
reviews: 29
8. Re: Trip report. Just got home. Nine great days in BsAs!

Sydneygirl45:

Our landlady in BsAs, a tango fanatic, took us, otherwise I doubt we'd have ever known about it.

We got there about 5:30 and the place was already jammed. she knew the manager and wrangled a table for us. So I'd suggest going early....4 or so..

It's kinda like a high school dance, in some ways. The mostly older women and men sit separately, for the most part, and look around the room for potential dance partners. They will make eye contact and then man will, in a very subtle way, nod his head slightly and if the woman wants to dance she gets up and they meet on the floor. (our landlady tipped us off on how it works)

The couple will dance four dances, called a "tanga," and then separate. Our landlady said that if a couple dances two tangas i a row it's assumed that they are going to bed that night!

A very interesting cultural ritual to observe.

And then it's a short walk to Florida Street for sourvenir shopping....

Philadelphia, USA
posts: 333
reviews: 1
9. Re: Trip report. Just got home. Nine great days in BsAs!

Does everyone dance? Unfortunately we are not tango-capable.

Buenos Aires...
Destination Expert
for Buenos Aires
posts: 16,155
reviews: 14
10. Re: Trip report. Just got home. Nine great days in BsAs!

No, chris, not everyone dances.

Confiteria Ideal is great for those who want to perhaps take a lesson and watch the dancers. Or just watch.

Tango dancers can be very possessive about their milongas and non-dancers attending , so Confiteria Ideal is good for both.. It is also just a great place to go .. let me see if I can find a photo

akworld.net/BAweekly/…confiteria-la-ideal.jpg

…flickr.com/8/8763062_c3703e34d1_o.jpg