Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Buenos Aires aka BsAs

Buenos Aires, or as the locals call it, BsAs was actually one of the favorite cities we have visited during our travels. Maybe it's because we rented an apartment and it felt a little like living back in New York City (except it really doesn't compare). There was a bit of routine that we've missed along with the city being easy to navigate while having neighborhoods to stroll through. We arrived on December 30 on a flight from Puerto Iguazu. Since it was a domestic flight, we flew to AEP, which is an airport right smack in the middle of the city. It cost 180 pesos ($19-$27 depending on the exchange rate) for a car to take us from there to the apartment in Recoleta about 20 minutes away.

Arriving in Buenos Aires

Rio de la Plata is right outside...can you see it?

On our way to the apartment, we drove by this park - I thought the trees had a lot of depth

We spent a total of 7 nights in Buenos Aires and took our time seeing the city and trying the restaurants. We rang in 2014 here but didn't actually go out - we cooked a nice meal and celebrated with some wine and champagne. The alternative was an overpriced meal and trying to find our way to/from Puerto Madera where the fireworks would be. The guy who rented us the apartment said that the taxi drivers would overcharge us and that it could be a little unsafe walking around at night. So, we opted to stay in the safety of the apartment for that evening. During the day on New Year's Eve, we walked around the neighborhood and visited Recoleta Cemetery, famous for being the home of Eva Peron's grave.

Iglesia Nuestra Senora del Pilar is right next to Recoleta Cemetery

It was a bit eerie to be walking around the mausoleums but it was neighborhoody

Here we are looking for Eva Peron's grave

Looking down some alleys

The line to see Eva Peron's grave

It almost looks like a movie set

Angel statue

Familia Duarte

Eva Peron's headstone

Sleeping cat

I thought this looked pretty cool

Leaving the cemetery

We then continued to walk around town

Side shot of Teatro Colon, the main opera house in Buenos Aires

Looking down Tucuman Street

Obelisco Center

On Av 9 de Julio

Plaza de Mayo, where many protests are held

After 2 hours of walking, we decided to try the subte

Kind of like the subway in NYC...

Preparing for New Year's Eve festivities in the apartment

Here's a shot of the living room

Happy New Year!

This is my attempt of taking a photo of the fireworks that went off at midnight

We lounged around on New Year's Day but on January 2, we took a tour of the city on the hop on/hop off tourist bus except we really didn't do much hopping off.

Nice day for a double decker bus ride

Long line

Passing by Plaza de Mayo

La Casa Rosada (The Pink House) - executive mansion and office of the President of Argentina 

On the bus

Another view of The Pink House

Another view of Plaza de Mayo

Paul is longing for Starbucks...ok, not really.

Narrow streets - hey, another Starbucks!


Entering La Boca, a popular neighborhood in Buenos Aires

Passing by Boca Juniors stadium

A better view of the Boca Juniors stadium sign

Mustache Kitty learning about all the sights

Here you can see the stadium a little better

Driving past some colorful houses 


On the right is Puente Transbordador - a transporter bridge used from 1914-1960

We then drove past the Caminito neighborhood - I liked how the cobblestoned streets looked

We passed by Puerto Madero - this is where the fireworks show was for New Year's that we skipped

Cool building

And then folks washing your windshield at a stop light

I like the buildings here

Near a mall - can you tell?

General Jose de San Martin monument

Plaza San Martin is a popular park in the Retiro neighborhood; Torre Monumental (formerly known as Torre de los Ingleses) is a clock tower in Plaza Fuerza Aerea, right next to Plaza San Martin

Big steel flower known as Floralis Generica located in Plaza de las Naciones Unidas (United Nations)

Passing by the Planetario

A better view of it

Capt'n is back with a vengeance - look at it!

Monument here

Monument there

Hipodromo Argentino - horse race track

Monuments everywhere! Ok, this is just a close up of the last one...

The next few days we tried out a couple of restaurants recommended by the guy who rented us the apartment, walked around the city and did laundry (which was nice to be able to do twice in one week - and for about $1USD). All in all, we had a really nice time in Buenos Aires - probably one of the few cities that we'd return to.

Except there is graffiti EVERYwhere

First restaurant we tried was La Cabrera

Happy hour starts @ 7pm and all food & drink is 40% off...we are ready for some meat! 

Bring on the 40% off wine!

We tried to take the subway back to our apartment at 10:45pm but it was closed

Cooking!

The view from the floor where we did laundry

One of the last things we did was check out the largest bookstore in South America, El Ateneo.

El Ateneo - not open until 12pm on a Sunday

So we walked around...Paul found a store he would like to see back in the States

We walked around the neighborhood and then waited another 30 minutes outside

Nice buildings on that street

More buildings across from El Ateneo

And graffiti right next to El Ateneo

Paul can't wait to go inside

So he can see how much Los Pitufos 2 costs on DVD. Why is there a translation for Smurfs?

Inside the bookstore

It was an opera house and now it's the largest bookstore in South America

Paul is looking for Los Pitufos 2

A few more shots of the bookstore:








And then on January 6, we got up at 4am (again) to catch our flight to Ushuaia, the southern most city in the world and a jumping point to Antarctica.

Ugh, the bag is so heavy!

Pretty colors in the sky at sunrise

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