As we arrived, we were totally unprepared – we had no idea what to see, do and expect. It was already late so we headed straight to our amazing hostel Elefante Rosa – an old building with high ceilings, an impressive lobby (look up!) and an extremely helpful host Diego. They offer dorms as well as private rooms (at good prices) with breakfast and a kitchen to use. Located just steps from 2 subte (BA subway) stations, it’s a good choice if you’re looking for something special (note: this is not advertising – it’s our opinion).
The first morning we went to the famous cemetery La Recoleta to visit Evita Peron’s grave. But the cemetery is worth visiting even if you don’t care about Evita. The massive gravestones and tombs form a small city of death by themselves.
5 minutes away we visited Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes (free) and a small park, where a giant flower “Floralis Genérica” is on display.
From there we walked a few blocks before we reached July 9 Avenue, the widest avenue in the world. It has 7 lanes in each directions, as well as 2 parallel lanes on each side. And believe us, you need a few minutes to cross this highway. In the middle you can even find an obelisk. Lots of “jacarandas”, trees with deep purple blossoms mitigate the asphalt feeling, but we were too early to witness it. It would be cool if Maribor planted something like this – you know, purple love.
We went back to our hostel, because we had big plans for the evening – we managed to get tickets for a football match between Argentina and Ecuador. The atmosphere was even better than in Brazil (probably because the stadium was almost full), everyone was very positive and excited until Ecuador scored. After the first shock the cheering became even louder. Then Ecuador scored again. 0:2. The mood of all Argentinians changed and suddenly there weren’t just 2 coaches on the stadium, but 60000. The minutes passed, the Argentinians didn’t play better, and the spectators were getting more and more annoyed. After the final whistle the stadium became the host of a huge whistle concert. Yes, Argentinian fans are pretty demanding. But we (especially Jure) were happy – seeing players like di Maria, Aguero and Tevez doesn’t happened every day.
The next morning we tried to figure out the confusing BA bus system. Even Diego was using a manual. J We found the right bus (thanks Diego) and drove to La Boca, the colourful neighbourhood. There we found a Slovenian house – how cool is that?! And of course we had to visit the stadium of Boca Juniors, the home club of legendary Maradona. The multimedia museum is full of history, but the highlight was stepping on the stadium into the sector of the BJ fans.
After so much football we were hungry. In San Telmo we found a restaurant with typical Argentinian food. A friend from BA said to us before we came there: “Eat steak and drink wine.” We’ll do. We ordered local red wine, a medium-well done steak and beef with potatoes. We had a real feast, Simona almost got a meat-shock.
With fool tummies we wandered the streets of BA before we came to Plaza de Mayo and visited Casa Rosada and Buenos Aires Metropolitan Cathedral. This is the main Catholic Church in BA, where Pope Francis, then Jorge Mario Bergoglio, served as Archbishop.
Admiring the beautiful architecture we ended up on the huge avenue on Plaza de la República right in front of the big obelisk. We again rode the subte – did we mention that the Line A in Buenos Aires was the first Subway in South America, the southern hemisphere and the Spanish speaking world? And on some lines you still can ride wooden carriages.
We slowly returned to the hostel in time for packing. Tomorrow we move south – so south, we’ve never been before. Patagonia, here we come.
Slovenian couple based in Graz, Austria * 1-year around the world trip * 50+ countries * 6 continents * To travel is to live. /H.C.A./