When we approach the Retiro Bus Terminal, we immediately get the feeling of being in one of the largest cities of Latino America. Between dozens of coaches, more than a hundred different bus companies and 75 gates divided over the half-kilometer long terminal, a huge crowd tries to make its way to and from the city center. Once outside, we look for a landmark and walk towards the neighborhood of San Telmo to begin the search for a bed. That fact that this weekend a number of concerts and the Superclasico – the final of the Copa Libertadores between Boca Juniors and River Plate – take place in the city does not make the search really easy. After an hour or two of finding only very expensive or fully booked accommodations, we decide to reject the analogue method and reserve a room online.
The first day in BA we wander through Microcentro, the most central district of the city. We have to get used to city life while we visit a number of squares and buildings. The most interesting places can only be viewed on a tour or an online reservation. But as it turns out we are lucky: On Saturday, the Museum Night will take place in BA, where almost all museums and monumental buildings will open their doors for free. We try the Azimo App to pick up Pesos at one of the offices in Buenos Aires. As a result, we save the high costs of debit card payments and can immediately withdraw a larger amount than the 70 euros on which most banks set their ATM limits.
We would visit the famous La Boca district twice. When we get out of the bus for the first time in La Boca, a heavy storm starts and would not stop for the rest of the day. The Superclásico is canceled due to the incessant rain, so unfortunately there is not much left of the blue-yellow mass of Bocafans. The neighborhood has come back to life when we return a few days later. The colorful houses and stalls, murals, tango music and the colorful football temple La Bombonera make for a much more attractive visit in the bright sunlight. And now we also have the possibility to get into the famous stadium!
We make the best use of the Museum Night and visit the Plaza de Congreso, Casa Rosada where we are always standing in line for an hour, in the pouring rain. We are reward with a brief visit of the balcony on which amongs others evita and Maradona adressed the Argentinian people. In order to warm up and dry, we finally take a look at the Casa de la Cultura. On Sunday morning, the historic district of San Telmo is transformed into a large buzzing market. Always a fun sight to browse and watch all the people. Since the Superclásico is played today, we adapt our plans accordingly. After a visit to the Recoleta cemetery and Evita’s grave we watch the game in a restaurant where a mix of Boca and River Plate fans shout out at their loudest: 2-2!
Apart from some money business, we also have to wash our clothes, repair Rubens sleeping bag liner and reserve tickets for the crossing to Colonia del Sacramento. After a week BA we leave Argentina the second time for a trip to Uruguay, because now we are here anyway …