Rivaling Madrid or Paris for sophistication and culture, the tree-lined boulevards of fashionable Buenos Aires are home to superb restaurants, art galleries, museums, the magnificent Teatro de Colón and the brightly colored houses of La Boca barrio. As the sun sets, the Recoleta neighborhood awakens and the passionate melodies of the tango rise from the milongas along San Telmo’s cobbled streets. Few cities in South America share the ambiance, lifestyle and amenities that make Buenos Aires so endearing. Without further ado, below are our top favorite things to see and do in this glorious city.
Although Argentine President Kirchner may not live here, she does work at Casa Rosada, which is why you will be asked for identification and have your items x-rayed when taking a tour of the famed pink building. From the outside, you can still experience the presidential pomp and circumstance with the changing of the guard in front of the palace every hour on the hour.
This world-famous theater opened its doors in 1908 and boasts virtually perfect acoustics. If you are unable to see a performance, you can still experience its grandeur on a guided tour. The theater’s interior décor is spectacular, anchored by an immense dazzling chandelier surrounded by frescoes painted by famous Argentine muralist Raul Soldi.
Walking along the 24 exhibition halls of the ground floor, you will encounter sculptures by Curatella Manes and Rodin, paintings by El Greco and Rembrandt, the magnificent Goya´s room, and the most important Latin American collection of impressionists and post-impressionism, from Manet to Sorolla, Van Gogh, Gauguin, and Degas…and that’s just the first floor.
The entire cemetery is laid out in sections like city blocks, with wide tree-lined main walkways branching into sidewalks filled with mausoleums. You can wander for hours as this sanctuary contains 4691 vaults, all above ground, of which 94 have been declared National Historical Monuments and are protected by the state. See the final resting places of notables from past presidents to celebrities, including Evita Perón.
A visit to Buenos Aires would not be complete without dancing the tango. This particular milonga (place where tango is danced) is frequented by Porteños (Buenos Aires locals), which offers you the opportunity for a full cultural immersion. Tango lessons are offered if you arrive early, but the real experience is to watch the locals show off their best dance moves.
Buenos Aires’ most historic neighborhood has narrow cobblestone streets lined with resplendent, often crumbling buildings, family-owned bakeries, antiquated hardware stores, and an eclectic mix of bars, cafes and restaurants. Only a quick walk south of Plaza de Mayo, it’s like stepping 100 years into the past.
Attending a futbol (soccer) game in Argentina is a unique experience and even the small leagues will draw huge crowds and leave your ears ringing with enthusiastic chants and pounding drums. If possible, catch a game either at iconic El Monumental stadium or La Bombonera grounds, where the local teams River Plate and Boca Juniors play respectively. You can also enjoy a stadium tour at either facility to explore behind-the-scenes, visiting the locker rooms and VIP areas, and walking the pitch before kick-off.
Enjoy all of these experiences on the Vineyards & Waterfalls voyage that begins with an overnight stay in Buenos Aires on February 21, 2016 and sets sail toward Uruguay and Brazil on February 22. Enjoy another overnight in Rio de Janeiro before disembarking on March 4. Guests in every suite category may indulge in up to 41 FREE Shore Excursions and Early Booking Savings of $3,000 per suite.