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Trip Report - 6 days in BA in September!

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Los Angeles...
posts: 50
Trip Report - 6 days in BA in September!

My mom and I had an amazing time in BA! We ended up spending all 6 days in the city and had so much fun. I wanted to thank everyone on the forum for their help and add these tips/hints:

The best tour that we did was the El Zanjon de Granados in San Telmo. Our guide was amazing and the history, tour and home were a great surprise.

Our biggest disappointment was the Jewish tour that we booked. We felt we did not learn or see anything of the current Jewish population and didn't even go to where they live. We paid quite a bit of money and did not feel we got much in return.

We loved seeing a Tango show (we saw Los Angelidas) and went to Cafe Tortoni one night just before 11:00 to catch another show. If you want to see the show there, we were told you need to go during the day to get tickets. It was full and we missed out. Bummer.

Another highlight was going to the Opera. We thought that would be the best way to see the Opera House. What a thrill! Tickets were not horribly expensive and sitting and watching the show in that beautiful building made for an amazing night!

We spent almost a whole day strolling in the stores in Palermo. What a luxury! Note that most stores do not give refunds, only exchanges. Salespeople were so nice.

Our best meal by far was Cabana Las Lilas. Yes, it was more expensive than some other "top" parillas, but the food and service - and location, was so much better than La Cabrera. We spent our last lunch/afternoon sitting on their patio and partaking in all of the extras they offer - the amount of bread was amazing! My mom and I shared a steak order and it was more than enough. I also suggest getting coffee for dessert. It comes with a complimentary cookie plate that is more than enough dessert. Lunch, with wine, was well under $100, including tip.

Oh, and we stayed in the Loi Suites in Recoleta and thought the hotel was just great. Breakfast was included and the room was quote large. We thought the location was excellent, but we cabbed everywhere. We felt totally safe walking around the neighborhood at night - which we did most nights for dinner or dessert.

WDC
Destination Expert
for Buenos Aires
posts: 3,124
reviews: 42
1. Re: Trip Report - 6 days in BA in September!

Thank you, Karyn for a really nice trip report...and especially for your tid-bits and reactions to some tours, Loi Suites and eateries.

So glad that you and your mom enjoyed yourselves.

Boulder, Colorado
posts: 1,134
reviews: 213
2. Re: Trip Report - 6 days in BA in September!

Thank you for taking the time!

Hubby and I did El Zanjon three years ago and loved it as well!

Lunch at Cabana Las Lilas"well under $100". I should hope so! More than $50?????????

Have made note of many tidbits. it's always wonderful to see others having a great time too!!!!!

Abilene, Texas
Destination Expert
for Buenos Aires
posts: 7,045
reviews: 64
3. Re: Trip Report - 6 days in BA in September!

Thanks for taking the time to share your reactions, good and not-so-good.

Which tour guide/agency did you use for the Jewish tour? I have gone on at least five Jewish BA tours with Eternautas and always found the experience worthwhile.

Edited: 12:59 pm, October 10, 2011
Nice, France
Destination Expert
for Buenos Aires
posts: 1,919
reviews: 4
4. Re: Trip Report - 6 days in BA in September!

What a disappointment that the Jewish-area tour you paid much for was so thin on content when you had looked forward particularly to this aspect of your trip. How much do you think this may have been due to the severe restrictions placed on entering Jewish-owned or run buildings since events in the '90's? Also, have you told the tour company that you didn't receive value for money? I can't imagine why your tour company didn't at least take you walking around a Jewish area but there may be a reason.

I'd suggest that you write a separate report about those tour arrangements, events it cancelled, and document the disparity between what you purchased and received. Doing this might be very helpful to others. The kinds of questions I've seen posted on this forum suggest that there's not much widely available information for forieign visitors wanting to see Jewish sites in BA.

You certainly saw and did many other interesting things, however, in under a week! You and your mother obviously did an excellent job of finding and planning things to do that match your interests.

"Los Angelitos" was completely renovated about 18 months ago and portenos admire how well that was done. I'll never forget its gold stencilled dense light blue theatre.

I enjoyed 'Zanjon' especially for its sub-text on early emigrants docking in San Telmo and what they found. 'Zanjon' taught me more about immigration than the "Immigration Museum" which as far as I saw had only brief written timelines of each wave of immigration and very sparse memorabilia brought by early emigrants on their sea voayages.

Upon exiting 'El Zanjon', I saw San Telmo's streets and the port in a new way although I'd already been there a few times during 2 trips. "El Zanjon" led me to feeling more grounded wherever I am in BA. A moment like that goes a long way towards defusing fear connected with being on a new continent about which one knows nothing.

I hope you'll return to BA so that we can read your next trip's report!

Abilene, Texas
Destination Expert
for Buenos Aires
posts: 7,045
reviews: 64
5. Re: Trip Report - 6 days in BA in September!

Sockhopper,

I have taken university student groups on five or six tours of Jewish sites. Security requirements are strict but not onerous. Some sites require tour guides to submit a complete list of clients and their passport numbers in advance; others require original passports on site. Any reputable tour guide would know which documents are needed for various sites, so this should not have been a problem.

Tours we have taken always include the two bombing sites, one or two Jewish synagogues--sometimes Sfardic as well as Ashkenazie houses of worship--a walk around Once barrio with a stop or two at Jewish businesses (especially sellers of fabric) and cultural life (a library with lots of volumes related to the history of Jews in Argentina and/or a Jewish theater).

If the tour includes Templo Libertad, there is a small museum attached and sometimes the Rabbi offers a brief history of the building and his congregation.

I have only been inside the AMIA cultural center once....admission is very limited...but the site itself is interesting and outside there are trees planted for victims as well as a plaque with their names.

Some guides are better informed than others...and most always have their own opinions about who was responsible for the bombings and whether Jews are fully accepted in Argentina.

A tour of Jewish Buenos Aires offers a glimpse into the diversity that exists in BA.....and is well worth the time.

.

Nice, France
Destination Expert
for Buenos Aires
posts: 1,919
reviews: 4
6. Re: Trip Report - 6 days in BA in September!

Dr. Dawggy,

Thank you for your introduction to Jewish culture in BA. I've not before heard of any of the places you mention.

Does one have to be Jewish to take the "Jewish Tour" including visiting the "Jewish Musem of Buenos Aires" ("Templo Libertad")? This museum offers tours in several languages!

argentina.travel/en/…

Abilene, Texas
Destination Expert
for Buenos Aires
posts: 7,045
reviews: 64
7. Re: Trip Report - 6 days in BA in September!

I am not Jewish, nor were the majority of students I took on tours. I am not Muslim either, and have taken similar tours of Islamic sites in Buenos Aires.

San Diego...
Destination Expert
for Buenos Aires
posts: 4,374
reviews: 668
8. Re: Trip Report - 6 days in BA in September!

Thanks so much for taking the time to share your trip report with us. I agree that the Loi Suites Recoleta does a great job. I haven't stayed there in many years. Just out of curiosity, what was the rate on the room there? Thanks again.

9. Re: Trip Report - 6 days in BA in September!

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