Walking one of the most beautiful cities in South America
Buenos Aires (Argentina)
A magnificent rural town. Argentina became independent from Spain in 1816. The name of the capitalcity, Buenos Aires, comes from the fact that at the time it was a small town with nothing more than grasslands and rivers. It was settled by Spanish and Italian immigrants, who developed it into the magnificent city it is today. It became one of the most important cities in the world, with its beautiful cityscapes capturing the heart of many travelers. Its strong European influence has led to its being referred to as the Paris of South America, and this city has many unique attractions. While walking around, we can meet a lot of culture and art that derived from the different groups of migrants.
To the colorful area of El Caminito
The moment you step out of the ship, you can see the blue sky expanding indefinitely and bask in the sunlight. Buenos Aires weather is sunny all year around, with rainy days being scarce. This great weather is an invitation to walk around the city. Our first destination is the Boca District, located in the south of the city. Boca is Spanish for mouth, representing the entrance to this new land where migrants looked for a more prosperous life. This port is also known in Japan due to a TV cartoon called “3000 Leagues in Search of Mother”, as the protagonist Marco travels all the way from Italy to Buenos Aires looking for his mother. The close interaction of different cultures gave birth to a new culture in Buenos Aires. This new culture is evident at Caminito.
Caminito, which means small road in Spanish, is the most attractive part of the Boca District. After arriving here, the first thing that will entertain your eyes will be the flashy colors of the building’s facades. These sequences of colors are so arty that anywhere is a good place to take a picture. Mannequins of famous South Americans look out at visitors from the balconies of these buildings, and painters display their works on street corners. Walking around while peeking into souvenir shops and art galleries, we find an open cafe to take a rest. After a certain amount of customers take a seat, music starts and a couple dance to its rhythm. This is the world famous tango.
Enjoy Argentinian Tango
Many theories put the Boca District as the cradle of tango. It is said that in the beginning it was only danced roughly by men at pubs, with women taking part in the dance later, evolving into what we know nowadays. The rich variety of rhythm patterns along with the graceful steps of the dancers are a masterful display of passion. It’s so entrancing that I forgot to take even a sip of my drink. While you can see many tango performances in such cafes, the best performances are reserved for the night. Hopping around bars while watching real tango performances is a pleasure unique to Buenos Aires.
Argentina, a Sacred Land for Soccer Fans
If you are excited hearing the name Boca, you are probably a soccer fan. This is because the Boca district is home to the Boca Juniors Soccer Club and its stadium. Starting with legendary Diego Maradona, this club has developed many world class players. Even if you are not a soccer fan, it is worth visiting this stadium, just 5 minutes away from Caminito. We arrive at the stadium, colored in the blue and yellow team colors. The museum attached displays uniforms and trophies which emanate a passionate air, and the short distance between the stadium benches and the field will surprise you.
Florida Street, one of the most bustling streets in Buenos Aires
After the Boca District, we head to this street, a pedestrian zone. Leather goods, silver crafts, daily goods and sweets are displayed at the stores that extend on both sides of the road. Stalls and street musicians liven up the area. This bustling atmosphere is proof of the prosperity of Buenos Aires. One delicacy that you must try is the national sweet, “Dulce de Leche.” It is a cream caramel made by simmering sugar in milk. Alfajor, a dulce de leche cookie sandwich, is also a must have dessert. The rich smell and dense flavor will melt in your mouth.
Grilling in the Kingdom of Beef
Argentina is a country known to have more cows than its human population. Moreover, annual beef consumption per capita is about 60kg. In this beef-loving country, there are many steak houses called “Parrillas.” Their famous dish is the asado steak. Normally, salt is the only seasoning for red meat, and the meat is cooked “al punto”, equivalent to medium. Looking at all the meat juices spilling out as you cut the meat will surely increase your appetite. Its deliciousness will make you want to lick the plate. This is a different taste from the one you can get at home. Enjoy asado with a famous Argentinian wine.
The Most Beautiful Bookstore in the World
Our last stop is El Ateneo Grand Splendid. It is often referred to in the media as the most beautiful bookstore in the world. Previously used as a theater, it took its current form after a major renovation in 2000. More than 120,000 books take up the space where seats used to be, a fresco mural was painted in the theater’s dome, and the stage became a café. This breathtaking place is perfect final goal for our stroll around town. As its name implies, Buenos Aires brought a lot of beautiful air into our journey.