Buenos Aires is one of my favorite cities ever. It gets a bad rep for being super dangerous, especially when it comes to tourists getting mugged (we had locals multiple times a day tell us to be careful or to hold out purses tighter), but there was never a time I felt unsafe there. The people are incredibly friendly, the food is awesome, and it’s just an absolutely stunning city – I loved every second of our time there. If you’re looking for where to stay, what to eat, and how to spend your time, keep reading!
What to see:
Cemeterio La Recoleta – the best way to describe La Recoleta would definitely be “hauntingly beautiful.” It’s one of the most incredible cemeteries that I’ve ever seen. You could easily spend 2 hours walking around through the cemetery, but I’d make sure to eat least leave yourself a solid hour.
La Boca – this was one of my favorite parts of the city, but it’s definitely not the safest part. I’d recommend taking a cab to and from the area, and keep close watch on your pockets/purses. The neighborhood is known for being super colorful and attracts a lot of tourists (so parts of it are a bit gimmicky(. It’s home to the famous El Caminito building, but I’d recommend getting off the main road and exploring some of the side streets to really take in the neighborhood’s beauty.
San Telmo – one of Buenos Aires’ oldest neighborhoods, there are tons of super cute plazas, antique shops, and little outdoor markets that will fill your time here. I’d block off about an hour or so, more if you want to eat lunch nearby.
Casa Rosada/Plaza de Mayo/Av 9 de Julio/Obelisco/Teatro Colon – these are a must-see and right near each other. Head down Avenida de Mayo afterwards, stopping in for a coffee at Cafe Tortoni before getting to Avenida 9 de Julio (it’s the widest street in the world!), where the famous Obelisk lies. Continue down the Avenue, and the beautiful Teatro Colon will be a short distance past the obelisk.
Tigre Delta Tour – we booked a day trip to the Tigre Delta through Viator (you can find specifics and book here). We were picked up and driven to the town of San Isidro where we had about an hour to explore. Then we headed to the Tigre Delta where we took a cruise through the canals. I’d highly recommend looking into a tour like this if you have time while in Buenos Aires!
Japanese Gardens – I LOVED these gardens. I think it cost about $5 USD to get in, and I would have paid $20 easily. We got there just an hour before close, so we spent every minute we were allowed wandering through all the paths and parts of the gardens. I’d recommend going earlier so you can spend more time! You can buy tickets there or through their website in advance.
Where to stay:
We opted for an apartment while in Buenos Aires, and we landed on Apartamento Palermo Soho, which we booked here. The apartment had two bedrooms, plus a sofa bed, so it was perfect for 5 of us. The hosts were super helpful and friendly, just make sure you schedule your travel to Buenos Aires so that you arrive around check-in time. We arrived early in the AM hoping to make the most of our time there, but we didn’t realize there was no where to store bags and no flexibility in early check-in, so we ended up having to carry our bags around with us for a few hours. It was in a perfect location though – super easy to get around, tons of great bars/restaurants nearby, and it was really affordable.
- La Cabrera Norte – incredible authentic Argentine steakhouse. They bring you so many small plates before your meal, so trust me, you’ll leave fully satisfied! We ended up having so much food leftover between us that we took leftovers back to our apartment and had another dinner’s worth of meals the next night. Tip: if you’re a vegetarian, ask for a plate of grilled veggies – my meal was incredible! Also highly recommend the pao de queijo (it’s Brazilian cheese bread, but they serve it all over in Argentina, and it’s amazing). There are multiple La Cabrera locations, but Norte was in the perfect location in the heart of Palermo, so I’d highly recommend it. Website here.
- Cabaña Las Lilas – we spent some time walking along the Puerto Madero near Plaza Mayor and the Casa Rosada one day and decided upon this restaurant. We sat outside in the back along the water, and the view and food were both awesome. Similar to La Cabrera, they bring you lots of small plates to start, so you’ll leave more than satisfied. Website here.
- Cafe Tortoni – one of (if not) the oldest cafes in the city. There’s usually a bit of a line, and it is a hot spot for tourists, so be warned. Most people were waiting for a table though, so if you’re willing to just go inside and order a coffee & pastry from the bar, you can bypass the line. It’s definitely worth the experience! Website here.
- Burger Joint – fun, casual, and artsy spot with a minimalist menu (burgers! even a veggie one!). They don’t have a website (it’s that casual), but just trust me!
What are your favorite places to see, eat at, and stay in in Buenos Aires? Leave a comment with your recos!