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Saturday

Argentina - Buenos Aires

I have just come back from an epic trip to Buenos Aires, Argentina. Never have I had the desire to go to the South American city, however with friends moving out there and expressing how exciting it is, i needed to see it for myself. Luckily for me, a friend of mine lives there, so we managed to stay with him a few days while we explored the city.

No what I expected at all, the city has a very European influence in it’s architecture and it’s relaxed way of life. I have never visited South America before, so expected for some reason a more run down, less developed part of the country. It never occurred to me that this ‘city’ was in fact a great metropolis.
After touching down on Friday morning, pretty jet lagged from our 12 hour flight- not to mention a 10 hour stopover in Madrid! We met our friend who lives in the lovely district of Almagro. Funnily enough, a friend from work lived just down the road from Mario Bravo where we were staying, just off Corrientes, a popular street that offers a range of shops and a LOT of Burger Kings.

The first epic adventure was to Creamfields – a better slightly less annoying version of the Liverpool festival, with a better vibe and a place where I actually felt really safe, despite it being in the area of La Boca, which tourists are advised to avoid if possible. La Boca however, has a great and interesting street with shanty houses that are painted beautiful colours and live tango dancing. We managed to survive the bus ride which took some getting used to. Unlike London buses, despite dropping you off on the side of the road one way, you may have to walk another 2 blocks to get back on the rite stop to get back. While trying to co-ordinate 6 friends at 6am in the morning when I had no clue where I was going, we were also crammed onto a buss, which was something like a ride in India!

We did the tourist things, went to go see the different areas including Recoletta, San Telmo and also Palermo, which is probably an area which most reminded me of being in Miami perhaps – large wide streets, roller bladders and a lot of palm looking tree’s. It was also full of interesting bars, caf├ęs and expensive shops, which was totally different to the vibe of San Telmo, which was intriguing with its markets, bars and restaurants – a more real vibe to BA.
We explored the beautiful markets in San Telmo, filled with other peoples junk, photographs and fresh fruit. Random ET figurines and pictures of Eva Peron covered stands and most remarkably, Hitler memorabilia. After speaking with an owner of one stall, apparently a lot of nazi war men fled to Argentina to escape after Hitler went into Hiding. It has since been thought, Hitler himself lived in Argentina (and Liverpool?) which could explain the following.

Watching a live tango show was lovely, especially in the summer sun,. Drinking a Quilmes, the local beer. Cocktails are also a popular choice, with Long Island Ice Teas and Pina Colada’s. I don’t think I have ever drunk so much alcohol as I had on this holiday.
The nights were filled with drinking at the Hostel, which in hindsight was a waste when I could of explored the many hidden gems of the city. Bahrein was a good club we went to on a Tuesday to see some Drum and bass, with Kika a choice for the Thursday night. A city that obviously doesn’t sleep much, despite walking back to my room at 7am, the city seemed to be more alive than it was at 7pm the night before. Buses constantly roaming the streets.

The street art was one of my favourite part’s of the city. The intricate detail of artists work plastered over walls across buildings, car parks and bins was fascinating. You sometimes caught teenagers in San Telmo, lurking around buildings with the intentions of graphitising over the paint, but after dark you don’t want to stop and stare, especially if you are not from round those parts.
The botanical gardens were beautiful, with the most hilarious security guards I have ever met. ‘Keep off the grass!!’ they would shout and blow their whistle’s, which was a shame as it was the most beautiful grass I had ever seen.
We visited the University of Law and noticed that governors from their were also street names. This supported an idea that my friend had thought of, that the city doesn’t really have an iconic history. Yes they had Evita, and they have a great diplomatic union, however apart from smashing England in the world cup all those years ago, what else is there to remember? There are no particular ruins that stand out, apart from the cemetery which covers an exhausting amount of caskets, but when you think of a huge city such as BA, you would imagine more intimate areas which support its nationality. However, the street names which reflected influences in the 21st centaury and plaza’s, it seems it is trying to find it’s own place in history now.

If I could go back to Argentina again, I would delicately try and make sure I ate more steak. The meat was beautiful and the service from a little argentine family in the suburb of Almagro was wonderful. I would love to try Locro, a dish with meat, fat and corn as well as some interesting meat platters with intestines.
I have taken many pictures myself of my trip, however they don’t quite capture what I really saw. Check out some of the images below, or even better still read Andy Donohoe’s blog – a friend of mine who lived there for a while and captured his movements through a lens.


This man must be famous, as I saw him when I was in Sna Telmo! The cutest man ever.


La Boca, where they have beautiful houses and amazing live Tango

Anydonohoe's http://blog./

I will update with my own pictures very soon

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