Argentina 2010: Buenos Aires (Part II)

As a continuation from the last post, here are some more photos I took while visiting Buenos Aires. But first, here’s a quick summary of my personal take on BA’s pros, cons, and needs:

  • Pros: steak restaurants with tasty grilled meats; diverse & quaint barrios; grand parks; cafe culture as an integral part of life; nightlife (clubs open at 2AM and people show up at 4AM); European-feel appeal; sensual tango dances (never tried it, but is sure looks damn sexy when the locals do it); bustling atmosphere; shopping; rich & creamy ice-cream; numerous late-night restaurants packed with people well beyond midnight
  • Cons: reckless & aggressive drivers; LA-style traffic jams; nonexistent pedestrian right of way; no stores have change for anything over 80 pesos ($20 USD); ubiquitous dog piles on sidewalks; no trash bins or cans anywhere (trash gets left in plastic bags on the street throughout the day)
  • Needs: noise ordinance (trash trucks come by for pickup around midnight every night!); trash bins for residential and commercial uses
  • Highlight of the trip: fantastic steak dinners with good wine and beer for under $20 USD
  • Lowlight of the trip: nearly becoming a victim of the old “mustard trick,” where someone squirts dirty liquid on you from the back and an accomplice comes by and points it out to you and offers to clean it up (along with your wallet). Luckily I read about that in my Lonely Planet beforehand so I was able to avoid it.

To start off here are a few photos taken in La Boca, a blue collar (a better word than “rough”) neighborhood that is also home to the Boca Juniors football team, which legendary soccer star Diego Maradona had once played for. It’s not the safest of neighborhoods, as many tourists (especially those with expensive cameras) have been robbed at knife point, but there are a few areas that are considered to be relatively safe.

A few photos taken in the modern Argentine district of Puerto Madero:

The view from our hostel balcony in the old barrio of San Telmo:

A trip to La Cabrera in the Palermo neighborhood of BA for a steak lunch:

My travel buddy Wil, donning our server’s headwear:

Some random photos taken around the city:

The clouds were always beautiful in BA…

I didn’t realize they celebrated Halloween in Argentina until I noticed a large crowd of teenage kids gathering around the Plaza de Republica square wearing makeup and all dressed up in costumes. It appears that the Argentine youth is enamored with the “gory” theme.

Overall, despite some of the cons I had listed, BA is truly an appealing city to visit and experience. I hope to have the opportunity to return one day very soon.

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