Buenos Aires

After a 14 hour flight from Frankfurt to Buenos Aires (17 hours in total from Vienna), we arrive fairly relaxed at around 8 am local time in Buenos Aires. After another almost two hours it takes us to get through emigration and customs, plus a 50 minute taxi ride into town, we arrive at our new home for the next month.


Thanks to Michael’s colleague Alan, who advised us, we seem to have picked a good location. “A bed with a view” as Karin points out correctly. Conveniently  located in Palermo Hollywood, a great part of Buenos Aires with many places to go out during the day and in the evening.


Something we have to explore right away, after doing some basic shopping for water and some food. With far more then 30 C and high humidity, we look out for a place to get some cold drinks. “Una cerveza grande, por favor.” is one of our first applied Spanish lessons that day. What works out perfectly well in places like Spain, will give you a nice surprise in Buenos Aires. A large beer is one liter here, like in good old Bavaria/Germany. At least it comes with it’s own cooler so that it won’t get warm. What a fantastic start into this adventure! :-)


Tonight we will go out with Alan and his wife, to experience the very traditional barbecue! Looking forward to it!

Una Semana En Buenos Aires

We are now one week in Buenos Aires already. Unbelievable, but time seems to fly even when you are on a sabbatical. Looking back, we have explored quite a few parts of the city, found a few good jogging routes and started our private Spanish classes. We have set up a good schedule between one day going sightseeing, swimming and our Spanish lessons and the other day going jogging, swimming and Spanish lessons as well.


We keep getting surprised by the large portions of food here. The other day we just wanted to have a snack during the day, while doing some sightseeing in town. There was a special offer for a platta “something” with a large beer (1 litro). Really not expensive but a huge portion of fresh and grilled cheese, vegetables, sausages and ham. We couldn’t really eat all of it ...


However, now we are starting to understand why breakfast in Argentina is not so important. They eat very late, like at 10 pm, combined with these huge portions, there is no need for a big breakfast. You are still digesting your dinner in the morning. By now we already have adopted to this with a lot of fresh fruits for breakfast. ;-)


Apart from eating, drinking and doing sports, we visited quite a few places already. Here the theme of “everything being a bit bigger” continuous. Buenos Aires has the widest street in the world, spanning 110 meter. It’s called Avenida 9 de Julio, honoring Argentina’s independence day. Impossible to cross it in one go. Overall traffic is not so bad at the moment compared to what it typically is - so we are told. School holidays however are about to end in two weeks, so let’s see the amount of traffic we will have at that time.


The fact that Buenos Aires is directly located at the Rio de la Plata, does not seem to be important. Alan explained to us that the city is really build facing inwards, away from the river. In fact, calling this thing a river is really an understatement. It’s the first river we have seen, where you cant see the other side at all. Continue to being a bit bigger, the Rio de la Plata is the widest river in the world, widening from about 2 kilometers to almost 220 kilometers at its mouth.


Buenos Aires has a few really big parks. Unfortunately they typically are divided into different sections by big streets that you need to cross if you want to go jogging. We already found a very nice route of about 10 kilometers. The plan is to run every second day. Let’s see ...


In one of the parks you can see this big flower, called Floralis Generica, created by the Argentinian architect Eduardo Catalano in 2002. It can be opened automatically in the morning and closed in the evening.

A very nice part of Buenos Aires is the barrio Recoleta. Here you can find the Basilica Nuestra Senora del Pilar, the second oldest church in Buenos Aires dating from 1732. Right next to the church, you find a very famous and interesting place. Stop reading here and first look at the picture below. Doesn’t this look like nice little houses in a narrow street? It does! The only thing is that the houses are occupied by the dead.


The Cementerio de la Recoleta is the burial ground for the rich people in Buenos Aires since the 1870s. The really rich people have been building their monuments here for all members of their family. The famous Evita has been buried here as well and people continue to bring flowers. Finding her grave was not so easy, but in the end, just follow the large groups and you will end up there eventually.


Of course, Buenos Aires also has other and bigger houses to offer: for example the Palacio Barolo. Completed in 1923, it was the highest building in South America at the time. Not serving any specific purpose, it is home to a spanish school, travel agencies and other offices.

The carnival that does not exist

Hey, we almost forgot to mention our interesting experience with carnival in Buenos Aires. Might have to do with the fact that it almost does not exist. Honestly, it was very difficult to find any evidence of it.


First, we asked our new friends here. Common answer was: “What do you mean? There is no carnival in Buenos Aires!”. OK, not exactly encouraging. Especially as it was in total contrast to what we found on the web. There are quite a few places listed in the city where they celebrate carnival. Not just a couple of days but for a few weekends. And Carnival Monday and Tuesday are public holidays. This means, there must be something like carnival here and our friends just don’t care... that’s what we thought.

In the end we actually found it! Similar to other carnival events we have been to, they do have a sort of procession of groups. Of course, here everything is focused on music, colorful costumes and dancing. However, it is only one group (Murga, as it’s called in Bs As) performing at a time. Yes, only one group in a tiny street, one block long. They make very good music, have very enthusiastic dancers and even kids who enjoy it a lot. Michael in particular liked the drummers, having being a drummer at carnival (Fasnet) himself for many years.


After 30 minutes, everything is over and the group leaves. “Hm ... that was a bit short!” is our first thought. However, we think the plan was for another group to come and perform but after a while we leave... Hey, as this seems to be a fairly new phenomena there is room for improvement.


You see, our friends told us that there is no such thing as carnival. Now we understand why... Nevertheless, it was good fun watching this one Murga perform! They where really enthusiastic and did a great job!

copyright © 2022 by michael zink + karin schmidt

blog admin



contact us