Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Location: Buenos Aires, Argentina

Rundown: Spent the Chilean Dieciocho break in Buenos Aires, Argentina soaking up the fine wine, great steaks, tango, and smooth culture.

It's cold in Chile this time of year! The mountains were deep set in snow as we jetted over them for a week or so in Buenos Aires and other parts of Argentina.

Spent our first few days walking around the beautiful, European city.

Tons of great parks, long boulevards, and interesting architecture made for excellent wandering.

Although some parts of the city has an old-world feel, others are very modern. The combination makes for an interesting vibe.

Perused the huge Sunday markets, walking up and down the cobblestone streets and into the San Telmo antiques market.

We ate like kings (or pigs?). The food was amazing!

Lots of cute sidewalk cafes to stop and... have a cafe. Did I mention the food?

Also hit up the live music scene most nights. Lots of great musicians with influence from all parts of Latin America. This Brazilian jazz group accompanied a swanky dinner and a nice bottle of wine. All in all a terrific night.

Spent a few evenings with some friends from Nido, which was a treat. We run so much at work it's nice to share some time and a bottle of wine and catch some good live music.

Buenos Aires has a fabulous above-ground cemetery, with huge marble tombs, ornate statues, and narrow walkways. Made for an interesting afternoon of wandering while the shadows stretched out...

Helpful people to show you around... if you don't mind your hand being held. Literally. This old gentleman led us around Cementerio de la Recoleta as the bells were tolling to send the living back to their homes. He seemed part specter himself.

The whose-who of Buenos Aires are immortalized here, including the famous Eva Peron, or 'Evita', a political leader during the 40's and 50's.

Perused the different barrios of Buenos Aires, including the gregarious La Boca, with it's obnoxiously colored buildings and intense touristy feel. You can get off the main drag and find some pleasantly seedy streets though.

After a walk around the area it isn't hard to imagine how tango became so popular here. The whole place is odd and sassy. Aren't we all.


Spent a day finding and exploring the zoo in a town called Lujan. It's a petting zoo, plain and simple. So there were little enclosures full of cute animals like goats that you could play with.

Other petting zoo animals included tigers.

...and lions.

All of the animals are born and raised in the zoo, and are touched by people from the time they are small. Also, all there are friendly dogs in all of the enclosures to keep the cats used to inter-species socialization. It has worked so far...

Some of the creatures were too dangerous to handle, like this nandu.

I always feel bad for having animals in zoos, and I came to this one hesitantly. For the most part the animals seem well cared for (at least well fed!). It's an incredible experience to be able to put your hands on them though.

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