Saturday, 21 March 2009

Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires...the city that never sleeps. They say NY is the city that never sleeps and they are so wrong. Everyone in BA don´t start eating till 11pm (of all ages. 5 to 95).
We arrived into BA at 11pm and freshened up and went for dinner...yep dinner at midnight and the restaurant was full.
Our very first impression of the city when we were in the taxi was that we were in Paris. The European Architecture and the main avenue (Av 9 de Julio) looking very much like the champs Elysees but with an obelisk, it made us have to think twice that we weren´t in Paris. It is know for its European feel with the Architecture and the cafe culture but with it´s own twist which makes the great city. A population of 3 million in BA city and 13 million greater BA so it is decent size city and after its economic fall in 2002, you can see it is still trying to bounce back which is great to see.
The best way to see a city for us is on a bike so after our first day of exploring locally on foot, we hopped on a bike tour that took us around the historical parts. Having just finished a novel "bad times in Buenos Aires" that covers the Peron period - Evita, Dirty and Falkland war which all has happen just over the last 50 years, it was great to see these place where it all went on. and this is such an interesting history but with such melancoly that still seen in the locals.
We have fallen in love with this city...even more so than Rio and could see ourselves living here :)
We quickly met some great local girls that took as to a bar/club that was hosting a live electro Tango show. This under ground bar rocked with such funky tunes coming from these guys. It looks like they were trying to mix old with the new...which really worked for us. We were so excited to have had a taste of the local life. Once again, it didn´t kick off till the early morning and on our walk home at 3.30am the streets were full of young and old casually walking home....very strange feeling. We would definitely recommend a holiday trip to BA.
I spent the next day checking out Recoleta (the rich area) where the highlight is the local markets and the Cementerio - Cemetery where Evita and Peron were buried. I have not seen a cemetery like it. Bodies are buried above ground (some almost 2 stories high) and families are buried together.
Sunday we got the opportunity to go to a local football game....La Boca v AAP. They don't always suggest girls go to the game as it is well known that SA football games are not always the safest but i felt extremely safe there. Lucky La Boca were winning the entire game so the crowd was tame. It may have been a different story if it was the other way around. La Boca is the poorest part of BA but it had such character in its building and people.
Leaving BA after 5 nights we were well ready to leave the city. It feels like the cities are sucking us in and spitting you out so we have been happy to wave goodbye. 13hour bus trip to Mendoza...the city of Argentina's exciting!

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