Buenos Aires is a unique and extremely fun place. Argentina is the 8th largest country in the world and 75% of it’s population live in greater Buenos Aires. Add that to the turbulent political history with governments being overthrown and the country being swung from left to right, plus it’s strong political figures like President Peron (and wife Evita) and strong rebellious heroes like Che, then you end up with an extremely clued up and opinionated group of people. There is apparently always a march of some kind going on in BA and the few days we were there was no exception. There was a ‘middle class protest’ about the government restricting how people spend their money outside of the country and we soon discovered that if you’re not afraid to ask the locals what they think then they’re certainly not afraid to tell you (even if you don’t ask sometimes). This particular topic seemed to split people down the middle and we spoke to people from both sides of the fence. All very open and really fun and interesting to talk to.
Buenos Aires has cemented Argentina as our favourite country so far. Bolivia’s salt flats are probably my highlight, but the people here have made the country stand out for us. On the way home from dinner one night (where we’d had an extensive chat to the restaurant owner about the topic above), we got on the bus to realise you can only use coins and cards (which we didn’t have) so 2 boys in front of us paid for our journey without thinking about it twice. How often would that happen in London and would I have done the same? I certainly would from now on.
The street markets and street food have been amazing (and relatively cheap). Things in general though have been very expensive here compared to the other countries we’ve visited. Our budget means we can now only afford separate beds in dorm rooms, which Tul says “feels like being divorced”. We’ve splurged on some nice romantic dinners to make up for it though, as well as taken a Tango class! Tango is everywhere in this city and one of our best nights was watching a free street tango show with live music from a wine bar (NOT free!) balcony.
Oh, we also had a few nights in a swanky hotel for Tul’s early surprise Birthday present which was also a welcome break from usual dorm rooms :)
Mendoza and wine region next!