Well our 2 weeks in Buenos Aires is finally up. It brought to a close our love/hate relationship with the city. We loved it but towards the end it seemed to hate us. 30+ temperatures every day we could handle but the 6 days of blackouts got a little much (yes it happened again since my last post). Basically parts of BA just can’t cope with the heat and the city shuts down the power. People took to the streets lighting fires in the middle of busy roads as a protest. We protested by continuous sweating and having crying children keep our apartment building awake, pretty much same same.
I’ll be honest, after 2 days in BA I was underwhelmed thinking 2 weeks is going to be a long time but the city quickly grew on us. It’s a very liveable city with friendly people, outdoor spaces, events, restaurants and bars and great football, if only they could sort out the power. Here is what we loved about BA travelling as a family.
1. Palermo – We stayed on the edge of Palermo and it basically a cross between Paddington and Surry Hills (for those from Sydney). Hundreds of cool trendy bars, an eclectic food mix and awesome street art. Restaurants generally don’t open before 8pm and we would be banging down the door. We ate Argentinian, Mexican, Italian, Armenian, Thai, English, Japanese…plenty. It’s definitely the part of town where you dine at 10pm, party till 4am and then sleep to midday. However, with two kids we wouldn’t know that.
2. Kids Museum – Museo de los Ninos. Seriously anyone with kids coming to BA needs to check out this place, it is pretty awesome with the kids happier than Shane Warne at a Sizzler reunion. It’s located in a shopping centre and has miniature supermarkets, tv stations, mechanics etc. The kids absolutely loved it. Pretty sure we would have come out with 27 contagious diseases but that’s half the fun isn’t it? You could get lost in there. I tried but Ez and the kids found me.
3. Tourist Bus – One of those double decker numbers. We explored the town on this on a 35c degree day and the kids still had a great time. Actually, Evie slept for half of it but Piper enjoyed herself. We sat up top and I pretended I’d just won the Premier League. I think the kids thought it was strange when dad was continually waving to the supporters down below. As touristy as they are I do think these type of buses generally help you get your bearings for a city, also a great way to try and get 3rd degree sunburn.
4. Outdoors – There are plenty of parks with average playgrounds as well as zoos, Japanese gardens, large pools etc. We checked out the lot. I can’t say the kid’s playgrounds of BA are anything to write home about (although that’s just what I’m doing now). One architect came up with an ordinary design and they just replicated that throughout the city. There are steel frames and wood everywhere – it reminds me of a senior’s adult movie. The actual slide part of every slippery dip is wood (splinters are part and parcel of the fun). They are always a great distraction though. Evie turns on the tears and I bust out ‘Look over there a playground!’
5. Sport – My Boca Juniors experience was a highlight (for sports fans check out my post on the game). Game Uno Boca Juniors…Everyone is football mad over here and most restaurants have a TV in case there is a game on. Portenos are a pretty healthy bunch and generally keep themselves quite fit, exercising in parks, going for walks and boot camps at any time of the day. Obviously I skipped this local experience.
6. Ice cream – With a love of beef comes a love of ice cream (I just realised they come from the same animal.) Helados (or ice creameries) are far and wide across the city. I was onto them like a fat kid likes ice-cream, funnily enough. Ez would often go for the healthy options like Limon or Frutilla (strawberry) – PLEASE! As boring as grandma undies on a first date. I stayed strong to the full fat Dulche De Leche (this Argentine caramel) and the many varieties thereof. We tried to introduce a rule of an ice cream every two days. On the off day, if I had a hankering I would just then pinch one of the kids and whisper ice cream in their ear. They’d start crying and I’d just say let’s get them one to shut them up. I could get done for excess kilos on the next flight.
All in all, we thoroughly enjoyed BA but were thoroughly pleased to jump on board our LAN flight down to Bariloche in Patagonia for the next step in our adventure.
Kids questions for the day
Piper – ‘What’s inside the calamari, how do you make buses, how do you make glass, how were we made’…how do you make everything!
Me – ‘Evie, what do you want for dinner tonight?’ Evie – ‘Maggies’ (her favourite Thai restaurant in Sydney). This has been her answer every day.
To check out more photos from our time in Buenos Aires, visit Erica’s Photography Gallery