quarta-feira, 15 de setembro de 2010

Trip Tips: Buenos Aires

4 days trip from September 4th, 2010 to September 7th,2010 held during the winter.

Flight from Brazil leaving on saturday at 8:00 am with estimated arrival in Buenos Aires at 11:00 am (local time) by Gol Airlines. The boarding fee of Argentina (US$ 29.00) is already paid along with the airfare.

The arrival is at Ezeiza International Airport, which is 35 km from the capital.
After making free shop and pick up your luggages, exchange currency on the internal Banco la Nación Argentina , which has the best exchange rate.
After that, go to the desk of Manuel Tienda León and buy a ticket to the hostel (AR$ 50.00 per person). There is a bus that takes you to a terminal in Retiro and, there, there are vans that distribute people throughout the capital, separated by areas.
If you're in a group and your time is valuable, worth splitting a taxi for AR $ 120.00 and is much faster and more comfortable.

The hostel of the trip was Hostel Tango, located on calle Chacabuco 747, San Telmo. Well located, close to the crafts fair in San Telmo and a few blocks from the Plaza de Mayo, and stay very close to Puerto Madero, too. There are restaurants, boliches, markets, and a subway station next door.
The hostel has dorms and private rooms with bath for singles or couples. The rooms are clean, some recently renovated, has heating, hot water and other heater in the bathroom. Face, bath and floor towels can be requested at reception. There is a shared kitchen and a living room. The internet is free but the computers are always busy.

One option is the hostel Hostel Suites Florida, one of the most disputed hostels of Bs As. If you want to stay there, make your reservations well in advance. The hostel has good external appearance, has a restaurant in which various parties and outings are promoted, and is located in the heart of Buenos Aires.

To get to La Boca from the hostel, you can take a taxi which costs only AR$ 15.00. I recommend you going to La Boca on a day that has not a game of Boca Juniors. To buy tickets when arriving is impossible and therefore there is no way to enter the stadium.

After visiting the stadium, which costs AR$ 40.00 per person to visit, walk up the Caminito and experience the cultural beauty of this region. Enjoy eating delicious candy at Panaderia San Nicolas.

Another thing that can be done and save some money is sitting in restaurants with a presentation of tango, where you can drink a wine at a good price and, at the same time, listen to musicians playing beside you a real tango Porteño and milongas , with the dancers dancing with all the emotion of music.
I recommend you La Barrica , which has a pleasant indoor environment, good service and very attentive musicians, who ask your origin and play a tango of your choice. Wines from AR$ 30.00.

If you want to shop, there are shops out of Caminito selling souvenirs much cheaper than in tourist places, and these shops take credit cards.
The store El Aguante is in calle Olavarria, 551.

At night, arrive early for dinner at Siga la Vaca at Puerto Madero. The dinner costs AR$ 83.00 per person and includes: appetizers, main dish, beverage and dessert. Very worth it! You can go there walking from the hostel, down Independence Avenue, go through the side of the Facultad de Ingenieria, cross two more avenues and voilà!

There are numerous choices of restaurants in Puerto Madero. Beside the Siga la Vaca there is one called Fredy, which has parrillada for two people for AR$ 150.00 with a bottle of wine included.
After eating, stroll through Puerto Madero and enjoy the view of the river, with the Puente de la Mujer on the background. The bridge style is based on a couple dancing tango, where the vertical mast means a man, and the horizontal part means the woman being held by his arms.

A good place to have fun in Puerto Madero is Asia de Cuba, well known among Brazilians and porteños. Arrive early, the line usually goes to the corner of the block.

On the second day, wake up and go straight in the fair in San Telmo, which are about 4 blocks from the hostel. Earlier, pass at one panaderia on Independencia Avenue. This region of San Telmo is full of places to visit.
By Independence Avenue, entering the calle Defensa will direct you on Plaza Dorrego.
The streets are filled with street vendors and local artists. All shops are open and there are tourists, currently most are Brazilians, everywhere.
It is worth making a visit to the antique shops, although their owners do not allow taking pictures inside. In this fair, you can also see a tango show in the middle of the street. Climate interesting.

Next to Plaza Dorrego, it is placed the church of San Pedro Telmo, which is open to the public and carries masses usually Sundays.

If you want to shop, very cheap leather clothing can be found at the Almacen Cueros, that the owner is attentive and friendly gentleman named Júlio. The gallery is located next to Plaza Dorrego, in the calle Defensa, 1066. The tienda Almacén of Cueros is on loc 1 and 2. The leather clothes are cheaper here than in Florida. In the same gallery is possible to buy beautiful ponchos in Asís Regionales, loc 23.
Do not forget to have a delicious dulce de leche ice cream in Freddo.
By the middle of the street you can purchase magnets, mugs, clothing, plaques and many other crafts.
If you have the hunger strike there are some options to eat there. If you want to save, run at MacDonald's in front of the Facultad de Ingeniería, Paseo Colón, otherwise, if you want to spend, you can visit the famous El Viejo Almacen, located in Independence with calle Balcarce.

After eating, you can scroll through the Defense to the other side, passing by countless hawkers (street books that are well worth buying) until you reach the Plaza de Mayo.

Remember, the guided tours to the interior of the Casa Rosada only happen on weekends. And they are free. And it may take several photos.
Arriving at Plaza de Mayo , you can see the Casa Rosada, the Banco de la Nacion Argentina the Cabildo and the Catedral Metropolitana.
Inside the Casa Rosada you can see some rooms meeting, the inner garden, the very luxurious room of current President.
Below the Casa Rosada, there is the Museo de la Casa Rosada .

After the Casa Rosada visit, you can go walking to Metropolitan Cathedral.

Also in the region, giving a 1 km walk (15 minutes), you can cross the Plaza de la República, take some pictures in Obelisco , and cross the Avenida 9 de Julio for the Teatro Colón, where you can watch a concert or ballet spectacle. Tickets must be purchased in advance. If you arrive just in time you run the serious risk of finding the ticket office closed.

After the show, back walking for 1 km and will have a delicious hot chocolate with churros at Cafe Tortoni , a traditional breakfast of Bs As which was frequented by artists and politicians in the past. Tango shows are also presented in Tortoni. Tickets must be purchased well in advance.

If you still have time, the Calle Florida gets their shops open until 8:00 pm. In two blocks from the Tortoni you get it and can see the busy street. Going by the end of the street, arriving at the monument del Libertador San Martin, take a right and walk two blocks to get to the Kilkenny Irish Pub, a bustling pub of the city that has happy hours from 12:00 to 19:00. In the Retiro neighborhood there are several bars and restaurants. Enjoy eating, in front of Kilkenny, in a restaurant called El Salmon.

Take a taxi and go back to the hostel to rest and know the places to go at night.
If you're still hungry, in front of the hostel there is a restaurant that sells various flavors of empanadas to AR$ 3.00 each.
A suggestion to the night is the Uniclub, located in Nuevo Circuito Abasto.

Super tiring after a day, the third day is more relaxed. Take a subté (subway) station in Independence, the fare is AR$ 1.10, and go to the station Plaza Italia.
Down the station, right in front you will find the Buenos Aires zoo. Admission is AR$ 22.00 and the ride is pretty smooth.
Leaving the zoo next door, you can walk inside the Botanical Garden. Admission is free and there are many beautiful plants and flowers inside.
In the same region is the Japanese Garden, behind the zoo, and is full of cultural activities and health.

After those two green visits, go walk the streets of Palermo and eating candys in Panaderia. The neighborhood is a delight to walk and quiet and different from the bustling streets of downtown.
Stop at a bar to take a delicious and cold Quilmes beer.
Enjoy the streets of Palermo to find some nice wineries and bringing many labels, as recommended by sommelierAmanda Loyo in her article.
On Saturdays and Sundays at Plaza Cortazár, there is a urban fair frequented by tourists and porteños.

After hiking and a few bottles of wine, grab a taxi to Recoleta and stop first at MALBA - Museo de Arte Latinoamericana de Buenos Aires, where you can watch works of great Latin American artists such as Frida Kahlo and Tarsila do Amaral, among others. The MALBA is on Avenida Presidente Figueroa Alcorta.

Ending the visit and continuing in the same street, a 1 km walk takes you to the Floralis Generica, a very interesting work of art. Aluminium was donated by Lockheed Martin and the execution was of the artist Eduardo Catalano. Every day at 8:00 am the flower opens, and throughout the year and depending on the season, it closes at random. In case of strong wind it also closes, because of its protection mechanisms. Opposite is the Floraris Generic there is the Museo de Bellas Artes in Buenos Aires, which contains works by renowned artists from world.

Behind the Bellas Artes is the Buenos Aires Design Center and the Recoleta Cemetery.
In front of the cemetery, there are several bars and restaurants with chairs and sun shields along the boardwalk. The Clark's have lunch or dinner for AR$ 46.00 (entry + main dish + dessert). Try vacio meat, which is a high and soft flesh.
Freddo has an ice cream parlor on the boardwalk too.

Take a taxi to Plaza San Martín and catch the very beginning of the Calle Florida. Enjoy the rest of the day for shopping. Stores Falabella (wholesale), Johnson (clothes) and Musimundo (music and electronics) are great for finding bargains.
Enjoy for a Havanna Cafe and eat a alfajor and drink a coffee.

At night, the Palermo Hollywood area has several restaurants with live music. I recommend Velma Café.

On the fourth day, you can choose to tour the Delta del Tigre (or Delta Paraná), which is 28 km from Buenos Aires, or know the Zoo Lujan. Both take almost a whole day.

To get to the Delta del Tigre I recommend taking the Tren de la Costa at Maipú station, which is a tourist train bordering the River Plate and passing through various beautiful places.
To catch the train, starting from the central station Retiro in Buenos Aires, you should get off at Bartolomé Mitre station and cross to the station Maipu.
During the train ride to Tigre, there are several places to meet out the stations.

To get to the Zoo Lujan you should take train and then retreat to the town of Luján. The trip lasts between 1:40 am and 2:00 am.

Returning to Buenos Aires, go shopping in a market as final:
- Dulce de leche (i.e.: Sancor)
- Wines (Uxmal, Trumpeter, Norton and Finca Perdriel)
- Biscuits
- Alfajores

There is a wine shop a block before the hostel called Ruffino. The service is very good and they promote tastings. The address is calle Chacabuco in Chile, San Telmo. The phone number there is +54 11 4362 2592.

Taxi to airport costs around AR$ 100.00 and takes 40 minutes, otherwise it should be scheduled with a day-ahead schedule that gives Manuel Tienda León van will pick up at the hostel. The price is the same airport: AR$ 50.00.
There is a van service from the hostel to the airport called Hostel Shuttle collecting AR$ 45.00 per person.

The return flight leaves Buenos Aires at 8:00 pm and arrives in Sao Paulo at 10:40 pm, by Gol Airlines.

Tips ballads: Agenda de Salidas Vuenos Airez
Subway map: Subté Argentina
Taxi City: +54 11 4585 5544

Have a nice trip!

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