I have SO MANY things to say about Buenos Aires. So many, in fact, that I have a podcast episode all about it! If you want to hear more, check out the This Bitch Travels podcast on iTunes, Spotify or pretty much anywhere you listen to your favorite podcasts. Don't forget to rate/review/subscribe!
In the interest of time (and your reading pleasure) I will tell you my top 3 favorite things I did in Buenos Aires.
1. Visited a Tango Club. One of my bucket list items in Argentina was to take a tango lesson. You could go to a show meant for tourists, which I'm sure are beautiful. I, however, decided to take the advice of a friend and go to a place called La Catedral Club. I could lie and tell you I was the only tourist in the place, but mixed in with the tourists were some locals who actually knew what they were doing. The club gives basic lessons if you show up early enough (early in Argentina means 10:30pm). I rolled in around 11pm and the lessons were in full effect. You may be wondering where MY lesson comes in.... I watched the lessons at the club and learned that tango is HARD. There is no way to come close to looking even the least bit graceful after probably 10 lessons. While I was reconsidering my bucket list requirements, a local guy asked me to dance. I warned him that I didn't know anything about tango. But low and behold, he said he could teach me! I got my lesson after all!!!
Side note: Here is my favorite tango song- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S98-BIpzZuk
That's me learning to Tango!
2. Speakeasies. Buenos Aires is a port city. As with all ports, they can be a hub of illegal shipments of all kinds of goods. Back in the prohibition era Buenos Aires served as shipper/receiver of lots of alcohol. But what good is alcohol if you can't drink it? Enter the speakeasies. Buenos Aries has several that are still working as bars but with the added mystery of being difficult to find. I visited 2:
- Floreria Atlantico is a bar/restaurant located beneath a flower shop. You must go into the flower shop (the flower shop has a sign on the door saying you must knock) and then enter the bar through a freezer door. Side note: I invited 2 new friends to meet me there and they ended up at the bar next door called Bar Atlantico. Tricky, if you don't know what you are looking for. The cocktails at Floreria were magnificent and relatively inexpensive. ALSO!! They played the only famous Milli Vanilli album on repeat. Not sure if they were being ironic or just in a M/V mood? Either way I was down for it!
- The Harrison Speakeasy is exactly like stepping back in time to 1920. It was an actual working speakeasy during prohibition and has been well kept and fairly unchanged. My friend Kim, upon realizing that I was in Buenos Aires, called me in a panic and insisted that I go to this bar before I left. Seeing as I was leaving the next day, I made my way over and was lucky enough to get in. I wish I had pics to show you, but they specifically ask that you do not take photos to preserve the mystery. I had 2 very tasty drinks and a nice chat with the bartender, who made me an old-timey drink called the Saturn. The Saturn was not on the menu because it is out of this world! That was his joke not mine. But the cocktail itself was NO joke. The bar is located behind Nicky NY Sushi. You have to ask to see it and a hostess will take you through a secret passage into the bar. It is a beautiful set up.
3. Uruguay. Now before you decide that I have lost my mind and that Uruguay has nothing to do with Buenos Aires, hear me out! I took a ferry ride from Buenos Aires over to Colonia del Sacramento in Uruguay for the day. Colonia is exactly the opposite of Buenos Aires in almost every way. It is a small city, very relaxed and quiet. The people there are friendly and down to earth. All of these things are great in their own right. But unlike most comparisons which highlight the bad, comparing Colonia to Buenos Aires brings out the good in both! Colonia felt like a welcome respite from big city life. When it was time to leave, I felt a little sad to say good bye but also excited to return to the city. Lots of people from Argentina uses Colonia as a weekend get away or have vacation houses there. It's easy to see why they would flock there for an escape from everyday life.