So I have been in Buenos Aires (or at least the area) for about 4 days now so I thought I would write a bit. I have definitely enjoyed my time here. Although, I have spent a day and a half of those away from the city because of couchsurfing. But will talk about that more later.
Buenos Aires really does feel like Europe. Someone actually told me that Buenos Aires is the cheapest city in Europe (thought that was pretty good). The city has huge boulevards like Paris, tons of cafes like Rome, a harbor and boardwalk area like Melbourne, but it still has a very Latin American feel with the people, the music, the culture. It really is a cool mix. However, because I have seen all those things in cities in other countries, the city doesnt have anything too special for me as a tourist. I have enjoyed the time here for sure, but really I have just walked about the city for maybe 10 hours total. There are some cool districts including the Puetro Madero (harbor and boarwalk), San Telmo (old district with a lot of cobblestone streets and salsa, which I watched a bit in a plaza), and Palermo (bars, social place). The weather has been great, with the highest being 100 degrees yesterday.
So most of my time in the city has been with couchsurfers. My first night here, I met up with several couchsurfers in a cafe called Cafe Tortoni, which is a cafe started in 1858 and is still in a very old building, very classy. After having a coffee and hanging out, the 10 of us went to another couchsurfing event at a bar in Palermo where about 40 other couchsurfers were spending the evening. After a few hours, we headed to another places where there were several bars with tables outside. Things happen very late in Argentina, especially the night life. Usually people start going out around 1 am, and places are most crowded around 2 or 3 am. At this place with the Couchsurfers, it was cool to be sitting outside having a beer at 4am on a Thursday morning and still seeing a lot of people around.
The next day, a couchsurfer invited me to her house in a suburb. It was funny, because she actually contacted me to stay with me in Peru but I told her I was not there any more. So I told her that I am coming to Buenos Aires. It worked out that she was on vacation, so she invited to her parents house in the suburbs. The house was a beautiful 2 bedroom house and it happened to have a pool (obviously perfect in 90 or 100 degree days). She then invited me to stay there and have dinner with her family and also stay the night (better to have my own room than to share with 7 other people in the hostel). It was really cool to get a glimpse into the life of an Argentinian family. Talking to her father was interesting, because he has seen a lot of changes in Argentinian politics. From dictatorships, to military rule, to democracy, he has seen a lot. And he doesnt like the current president, who happens to be a female, and the wife of the former president. That night, we went to a bar and played pool, and of course stayed out until the early hours of the morning, as they do here.
The next day (last night), my friend was going back to her university town of Lujan, so she invited me to stay there. Its only an hour away from Buenos Aires, so I decided to go. Its a cool city, with a basillica and a river running through it.
So now I am back in Buenos Aires after spending today in Lujan. I really wish I had more time in Buenos Aires since I have enjoyed it here, but I have already bought my ticket to Uruguay for tomorrow morning. At 9am, I am hopping on a boat to go from Buenos Aires to Colonia (an old, colonial type village). After spending the day there, I will head to Montevideo, the capital. There, I will stay Sunday through Wednesday, exploring the city and hoping to find some beaches. Wednesday night, I will come back to Buenos Aires before sleeping in the airport and taking an early flight at 4:45am on Thursday morning to Ushuaia.
I hope everyone had a good weekend!