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Buenos Aires


May Plaza, President's (Pink) House, Metropolitan Cathedral, & May Pyramid

Cabido, Recoleta Cemetery, Colon Theater, Flower Sculpture, & Plata River

Eva Duarte Peron, Evita, Juan Peron, San Martin, & Manuel Belgrano

Tango Dancing, Plata River, Delta Islands, Monograms, & Globus

Tagno dancing where it all began, in Argentina.

Tango dancing where it all began.

Tours

We use the best tour operator to book all kinds of tours to Argentina, including independent tours, hosted tours, escorted tours, and packages. Please contact us to book your travel. We book travel worldwide. Check out our Special Promotions.

Buenos Aires to Patagonia to Santiago

We were on a Monograms hosted tour that started in Buenos Aires, where there were two nights, and the details are described here. From Buenos Aires we flew to Bariloche where we spent two nights. We flew back to Buenos Aires and spent the night in order to catch an early morning flight to Ushuaia where we spent one night. The next day we boarded the Stella Australis cruise ship where we spent three nights and visited four islands in Chile at the southern tip of South America. We were taken from the ship to Punta Arenas to spend one night. The following day we flew to Santiago where the hosted tour ended after spending two nights. Contact Us for more information.

Hosted Tours

Patricia Grandinetti, our host and guide in Buenos Aires.

Patricia Grandinetti, our host and guide in Buenos Aires.

When we arrived at the airport in Buenos Aires we were met by Patricia Grandinetti and a driver. Patricia was our host and guide while we were in Buenos Aires. We were taken to our hotel and Patricia helped us to get checked in. She also told us about Buenos Aires, gave us recommendations on where to go eat and places to visit on our free time. She answered any questions that we had and we also had her phone number if we needed to call her for any advice while we were there. Most of the time we would be on our own, but it was very nice having a local host to help us plan are independent activities.

City Tour of Buenos Aires

Flower sculpture in Plaza de las Naciones Unidas, Buenos Aires.

Flower sculpture in Plaza de las Naciones Unidas, Buenos Aires.

On the day that we had a city tour Patricia and a driver picked us up at our hotel. It was morning, and we had a half-day city tour. In the Plaza de las Naciones Unidas, a park, we saw the most unusual flower sculpture which is shown above. If you look carefully at the picture you will see men standing in the bottom of the sculpture. Then you realize how big this flower sculpture is. It is 75 feet (23 meters) high and weighs 18 tons. It is made of steel and aluminum. It is designed to open in the morning and close at night. However, it was not working while we were there. Hence the men in the picture.

Plaza de Mayo

The Plaza de Mayo (May Plaza) is not to be missed as it is one of the most important squares in Buenos Aires. It dates from 1580 and some important buildings are found there.

Metropolitan Cathedral

Side chapel in the Metropolitan Cathedral, Buenos Aires.

Side chapel in the Metropolitan Cathedral.

The Metropolitan Cathedral is at the northwest corner of the Plaza de Mayo. The cathedral dates from the 1500s. But the cathedral had to be rebuilt a number times, partially because different portions of the building were in danger of collapsing or actually did collapse. In addition to an attractive nave the cathedral has interesting side chapels, and one is pictured above.

Mausoleum of General San Martín with guards in the Metropolitan Cathedral in Buenos Aires.

Mausoleum of General Jose de San Martín with guards in the Metropolitan Cathedral.

The cathedral contains the mausoleum of General Jose de San Martin in a side room to the nave. San Martin, considered a hero in Argentina, was born there in 1778. His body is entombed in the mausoleum, shown above. At the age of seven San Martin moved with his family to Spain where he was educated and later served in a number of Spanish military campaigns. He moved back to Argentina which at the time was under Spanish rule. He became involved in the struggle to gain independence from Stain, and is considered the main leader in the liberation of Argentina, Chile, and Peru. After military campaigns he moved back to Europe and died in France in 1850. He had left instructions in his will that he wanted to be buried in Buenos Aires, and his embalmed body was eventually taken there. Near his sarcophagus are three life-sized statues of women, facing in different directions, that represent Argentina, Chile, and Peru. His body is also guarded by an elite group of soldiers, and when we were there we saw the changing of the guards.

Cabildo

Cabildo museum on the Plaza de Mayo, Buenos Aires.

Cabildo museum on the Plaza de Mayo.

The Cabildo is located on the western side of the Plaza de Mayo. In colonial times it was the seat of government, but now it is a museum. It contains items pertaining to the May Revolution of 1810 including paintings, documents, and clothing.

May Pyramid

May Pyramid at the Plaza de Mayo, Buenos Aires.

May Pyramid at the Plaza de Mayo.

In the center of the Plaza de Mayo is the May Pyramid. It is a monument, shown above, that celebrates the uprising against Spanish rule on 25 May 1810. The monument and plaza are named after the month of the uprising. Through the years and today the plaza is where political rallies take place. At times the rallies have been violent with bloodshed and people killed.

Manuel Belgrano Statue

Equestrian monument to General Manuel Belgrano at the Plaza de Mayo, Buenos Aires.

Equestrian monument to General Manuel Belgrano at the Plaza de Mayo.

Manuel Belgrano, honored in the statue above, was one of the liberators of Argentina. He lived from 1770 to 1820. In addition to being a military leader he was also a lawyer and politician. He is known for creating the flag of Argentina. The statue is across from the Pink House shown below.

Pink House

Pink House, the president's house at the Plaza de Mayo in Buenos Aires.

Pink House, the president's house at the Plaza de Mayo.

On the eastern side of the plaza square is the Pink House (Casa Rosada), which dates from the 1800s. This is where the president works, but the main living quarters are elsewhere. The balcony, pictured above, is a great place for the president to address crowds in the plaza. It is also where the second wife of President Juan Peron, Maria Eva Duarte de Peron, affectionately known as Evita, spoke to very large crowds. She was the First Lady of Argentina from 1946 until she died in 1952. Although despised by the wealthy, military, and political types she was loved by many in the general public including the working class and unions. She had become popular through her radio show, acting career, and campaigning for her husband. She is credited with being an important factor in women receiving voting and other rights in Argentina. Her present popularity, especially outside of Argentina, is largely due to the Andrew Lloyd Webber movie "Don't Cry For Me Argentina." In her portrait of Evita, Madonna was filmed singing on the balcony seen above.

Recoleta Cemetery

Cementerio de la Recoleta, Cemetery in Buenos Aires.

Cementerio de la Recoleta.

The tombs in the oldest cemetery in Buenos Aires contain the remains of many famous and notables of Buenos Aires. Note the picture above. Recoleta Cemetery dates from 1822. The cemetery consists of fourteen acres (5.5 hectares). Walking the paths of the cemetery you see many impressive and well-kept mausoleums and tombs that were built at considerable expense. Some of the mausoleums are quite elaborate and there are many architectural styles. This is a cemetery you will want to visit. It is rated as one of the world's best cemeteries. We visited it with our guide Patricia. It is best to be with a guide.

Evita - In Life and Death

Maria Eva Duarte de Peron, known as Evita, was born in 1919 and died of cervical cancer at the young age of 33 in 1952. She is buried in the Duarte family tomb shown below. This is the most visited tomb in the cemetery. Her story in life and death is both very interesting and most unusual. She was the illegitimate child of Juan Duarte and Juana Ibarguren. Her father, a wealthy rancher, deserted them when she was a year old. As a child the family was very poor. From these humble beginnings she later became very successful. She acquired wealth from her radio career and for her social work the Argentine Congress bestowed upon her the title "Spiritual Leader of the Nation." Evita was given a state funeral, which was very rare since she was not a head of state. But she was very popular with her many supporters. It is recorded that the crowds that amassed in the streets outside of the presidential residence after her death were congested for ten blocks in each direction. Her body lie in state at the Ministry of Labour for two weeks. Mourners in long lines waited for hours to view her body. It was estimated that nearly three million people attended her funeral. After a Mass Evita's body was placed on gun carriage, which was followed by Juan Peron, government officials, her family, friends, and others. After the funeral her body was placed on public view in her office in the General Labor Confederation building for nearly two years. A large monument was to be built as her final resting place in which her body was to be displayed to the public. But the monument was never completed as events changed dramatically.

Tomb of Eva Duarte de Peron (Evita) and family in Buenos Aires.

Duarte Family Tomb, which contains the body of Maria Eva Duarte de Peron "Evita."

In 1955 there was a military coup in which Juan Peron was overthrown. For his safety Juan Peron had to flee from Argentina, and was no longer able to protect Evita's body. The military dictatorship that took control of the government hated her. They removed Evita's body and hid it for sixteen years in a crypt in Milan, Italy. Peron had taken refuge in Spain, and Evita's body once found was moved there and kept in the Peron home. By 1973 conditions had changed in Argentina, and Peron was able to return. He was elected president again but died in office in 1974. The vice president was his third wife Isabel Peron, and she became president. It was Isabel that had Evita's body brought back to Buenos Aires, and it was placed in the Duarte family tomb shown above. This is somewhat ironic considering the fact that Evita had been deserted by her father when she was a young child. The Argentine government wanted to make sure that Evita's body was secure. In the tomb there is a trap door in the main floor to a lower compartment where there are additional coffins. In the floor of that compartment is another trap door to a yet lower compartment, which is where Evita's body rests at depth of 27 feet (8 meters).

Many people visit the tomb making it difficult to get a clear photograph. The passage way between the Duarte tomb and the one across from it is fairly narrow. The front of the Duarte tomb also contains highly reflective glass. Thus pictures will often contain the reflections of visitors as well as the reflection of the photographer! To minimize or eliminate reflections take pictures from the side of the tomb.

Tomb of a Lady and Her Dog

Tomb of lady and her dog in Buenos Aires.

Tomb of Liliana Crociati de Szaszak and her dog Sabu.

The eye-catching life-size bronze statues of a lady with her dog is in front of the tomb of Liliana Crociati de Szaszak. In February 1970 Liliana and her husband were on a honeymoon in Innsbruck, Austria. They were struck by an avalanche while in their hotel room at a ski resort. The snow broke though the window and filled the room. Her husband survived but Liliana did not. She was twenty-six years old. It is said that her beloved dog Sabu back home died the same day. Sabu is also buried in the tomb with his master. The bronze statues, shown above, presents Liliana in her wedding dress and with a hand on her faithful dog.

Tango Dancing

Orchestra for tango dance show in Buenos Aires.

Orchestra for tango dance show.

If you go to Buenos Aires you have to see tango dancing. After all, this is where tango dancing began. We did an excursion one evening for a dinner tango show. Four couples performed tango dances, and they were fantastic and much fun to watch. One of the couples is shown at the top of this page and another is seen in the picture below, where they were dancing under colored lights. The orchestra providing the music was excellent, and is shown above.

Dancers performing at the tango dance show in Buenos Aires.

Dancers performing at the tango dance show.

In addition to the tango dancing four musicians, shown below, performed indigenous music. They were very good and the music was very nice to listen to. There was also a female and male soloist that sang songs, and they were good. From beginning to end it was a very nice evening, and one that I can easily recommend when you are in Buenos Aires.

Musicians performing indigenous nusic at tango dance show in Buenos Aires.

Musicians performing indigenous music at tango dance show.

Colon Theater

If you love opera, ballet, symphonic music, or chamber music you are in luck in Buenos Aires. The Colon Theater is known for magnificent acoustics. It is the largest musical theater in South America, and is rated as one of the top five opera houses in the world. The present theater opened in 1908, but there were massive renovations in recent years with the theater reopening in 2010. In the building you find Italian marble, French stained glass, and Venetian mosaics. The large main theater has seven tiers, and there is a large central chandelier with 700 lights. The season runs from April through December.

Plata River and Delta Islands Boat Trip

Exploring the river delta islands north of Buenos Aires.

Exploring the river delta islands north of Buenos Aires.

On our free day we chose to do a boat tour of the Plata River (Rio de la Plata) and the delta's islands north of Buenos Aires. The Plata River opens into the Atlantic Ocean. To the north of Buenos Aires it is fed by a number of rivers. The mixing of the salt water from the ocean and the fresh water from the rivers creates brackish water. So the Plata River is really an estuary. Many boat docks were seen on both sides of the water. Note the picture above. Behind the trees were many nice homes. This area north of Buenos Aires is where some of the more affluent have chosen to live.

Delta island boat trip in the Plata River north of Buenos Aires.

Delta island boat trip in the Plata River.

The boat ride, shown above, was relaxing and enjoyable. Snacks were provided to us. Guides explained what we were seeing and described the environment we were passing through. This is a delta system where many islands have been created. There is a wide variety of flora and fauna. This is also a popular recreational area.

The president Sarmiento House covered with glass on the Plata River north of Buenos Aires.

The President Sarmiento House covered with glass.

The house in the above picture was a most unusual sight. The house with a tiled roof is covered by glass. The house was owned by Domingo Faustino Sarmiento. He was president of Argentina from 1868 - 1874, and he lived in the house during the second half of the 19th century. The house has been declared a National Historical Monument. The building is now occupied by the Tigre Municipal Library. It contains information on the development of the delta islands. The reason for the glass cover is to protect the house from humidity.

Marina on the Plata River seen on the delta island boat trip north of Buenos Aires.

Marina on the Plata River seen on the delta island boat trip.

You see attractive and interesting buildings on the boat trip such as the Marina above. The boat trip ends in San Isidro. This city is said to be home to some of the most expensive property in Latin America. It ranks as one of Argentina's most affluent neighborhoods. We were give free time in San Isidro to shop. Falling that we were taken back to Buenos Aires by motor coach. It had been a nice day.

Departure from Buenos Aires

The morning after our tour in Buenos Aires ended we were picked up at our hotel by Patricia and a driver. They took us to the airport and Patricia helped us get checked in. Having a host was a real plus as we learned so much more than we would have if we had been on our own. That, plus the personal transfers made our trip that much more enjoyable. We were headed to Bariloche.

Buenos Aires to Patagonia to Santiago

We were on a Monograms hosted tour that started in Buenos Aires, where there were two nights, and the details are described here. From Buenos Aires we flew to Bariloche where we spent two nights. We flew back to Buenos Aires and spent the night in order to catch an early morning flight to Ushuaia where we spent one night. The next day we boarded the Stella Australis cruise ship where we spent three nights and visited four islands in Chile at the southern tip of South America. We were taken from the ship to Punta Arenas to spend one night. The following day we flew to Santiago where the hosted tour ended after spending two nights. Contact Us for more information.

Photos by Sunny Breeding. We sell prints and images.