Buenos Aires is the capital city of Argentina and one of South America’s most Affluent cities. There are a million and one things to do in Buenos Aires and with a population of almost three million, it is also one of the most populated cities on the continent.
Buenos Aires is known as a top tourist destination, being famous for its European architecture and being stuffed full of activities. The city is also well known as a multicultural hotbed and a beacon for budding artists. You will never get bored here as this is a city which never sleeps.
Although the list of activities to do in here is long indeed. Here we have trimmed it down to the absolute best 15 things to do in Buenos Aires.
1. Visit The City of the dead: La Recoleta Cemetery
First up and most definitely the spookiest on this list of things to do in Buenos Aires, is visit the city of the dead. This incredible place is located in one of the most exclusive neighborhoods of Buenos Aires, Recoleta. This district alone is worth the visit just to see the old European extravagance displayed in the architecture. Grand buildings line the boulevards of Recoleta and are a must see when visiting the city.
Getting back to La Recoleta Cemetery, although this place often gets called “creepy”, a stroll through the grounds is akin to a tour of a beautiful museum. Not only because of the wonderful Gothic architecture, but because here rests the most famous and powerful elite of Argentina.
With over 90 graves considered as historical monuments, this place is a sure fire way to blow your mind. (that is if you are not afraid of vampires and goblins lurking, waiting for their next victim)
Walk the labyrinthine streets and visit the many statues, sarcophagi, coffins and crypts. Take a moment to look up at the Evita tomb, maybe one of the most famous mausoleum in La recoleta cemetery. Enjoy the different architectural styles, take in the art deco, art nouveau, baroque and neo-gothic, and gaze in wonder.
The entrance to relecoleta cemetery is free and also there are free English Tours during the weekdays. If you would like to learn more about La Recoleta Cemetery, take a look at this marvelous article: Recoleta Cemetery, The City of The Dead
2. Explore The Colourful Streets of Caminito
Caminito is a wonderful street museum, filled with colorful houses and excited bustling tourists. The area of Caminto was first built in the 19th century by immigrants. Since then, the neighborhood has became an exposition of local artists and tango dancers.
Located in the south of the city, on the banks of the Riachuelo River, Caminito is the heartbeat of the La Boca neighborhood. A visit to Caminito is an absolute must on the list of things to do in Buenos Aries.
Exploring the colorful streets of Caminito, you will find many stalls peddling souvenirs, delicious foods to nibble and artists dancing in the streets.
The the cobbled stones of La Boca are awash with singing, dancing and artisans creating handicrafts in every corner. Also the colorful houses, made of wood and sheet metal, are a sight which will brighten any day.
However, do be aware this area is considered a “bad area” by the local. I would recommend you to be very careful with your belongings here.
If you would like more information about the area, read our article on Caminito La Boca here.
3. Learn To Dance Tango in La Viruta
Argentina dances to the beat of Tango and Buenos Aires is the birthplace of the dance. You should dance Tango at least once when visiting the city. Located in the Palermo neighbourhood, is one of the most popular spots to dance and to learn how to dance Tango. La Viruta has specialist teachers which will show you, in just one night, how to move your body and enjoy this popular dance.
After the classes, you can enjoy drinks and music at the same place. Additionally, you will chat with people from around the globe and dance Tango with them also. Depending on the weekday, you can also enjoy live Tango Shows.
La Viruta opens its doors Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays.
4. Relax in The Cities Japanese Gardens
The Japanese Gardens are an oasis of peace in the middle of this busy city. Located beside Tres de Febrero Parks in the heart of Palermo neighborhood, this gardens are beautifully maintained. The culture and landscape of Japan are very well represented.
The gardens include a Japanese tea house (during the day) and also a restaurant which opens in the evening. There is also a greenhouse, a lake and two famous artistic bridges.
The greenhouse is full of japanese trees, plants and bonsais. The gardens are crossed by a large lake and the two bridges: The Divine Bridge and The Truncated Bridge. From these bridges you can see the typical japanese fish: Koi carp which symbolise fortitude and courage.
All the elements of the garden are designed to create balance and harmony. If you need a break from the busy streets of Buenos Aires, it can be the perfect place for you to relax and breathe.
5. Tour The Pink House and Plaza de Mayo
The Pink House, originally called Casa Rosada in Spanish, is the executive mansion and office of the President of Argentina. This iconic building is painted in a pink baby colour and has been declared a National Historical Monument.
There are free tours which take place every weekend, where you can explore inside the rooms of this magnificent house and marvel at the Italian-French architecture.
During the weekdays, you can take great pictures of the front of the Pink House and walk through Plaza de Mayo, the city square and founding site of Buenos Aires.
This square is also the cities political hub, financial and administrative center and has been the scene of the most memorable events in Argentinean history.
In the surrounding area of Plaza de Mayo, you can visit monuments and historical sites as The Cabildo, The Pink House, The Cathedral, The Buenos Aires City Hall and The Nation’s Bank of Argentina.
Before you head to this historical and beautiful place, try to check the local news because it may be a big event or protest in the area. Anyway, do not miss to go here, it definitely has to be in your list of things to do in Buenos Aires.
6. Enjoy The Botanical Gardens of Carlos Thays
Next up on the list of things to do in Buenos Aires is one of the “greenest” entries on the list. This majestic garden of seven hectares, holds around 6,000 different species of trees and plants.
Located in Palermo between two of the main Avenue (Santa Fe Ave and Las Heras Ave), is one of the most beautiful green open spaces in the city. In the gardens you will also find a botanical library, a herbarium and five greenhouses.
The species of plants and trees are organized by their geographical origin, representing all the continents around the world. This means you can spend an afternoon strolling through the flora of the world.
There is also a special section of local species from the country. Each garden has their own different style according to the representing continent.
Additionally, while you are walking, you can appreciate a large collection of sculptures and art works made by famous artists from around the world. The garden shows different styles such as Roman, Greek, Persian, Arabic, French and Japanese.
If you want to walk and relax with an amazing view, this is the place to go.
7. Marval At The Colon Theater
The Colon Theatre is ranked as the third best opera house in the world and is well known for its acoustics and architecture. It has been the host of some of the most important conductors, singers and dancers of the 20th century. These include such star names as Igor Stravinsky, Herbert von Karajan, Daniel Barenboim, Maria Callas, Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo, Rudolf Nureyev, Julio Bocca and Maximiliano Guerra.
The auditorium is horseshoe-shaped, has 2,487 seats, standing room for 1,000 and a stage which is 20 m wide, 15 m high and 20 m deep. The theatre also has a large central chandelier which is illuminated by over 700 light bulbs.
The Colon Theater is a pride of the Argentinian culture and a standard for opera, ballet and classical music across the world. You can learn more about the architecture, history, and secrets of the Theatre by taking a 50-minute guided tour. The tour includes the spectacular main foyer, the Galería de Bustos and the Salón Dorado.
8. Stroll Among The Rose’s
The Rose Garden is a part of the Tres de Febrero Park and is located in the heart of Palermo. Known also as the Rosedal, this wonderful place is filled with roses in bloom.
In the middle of the park, there is a large, beautiful lake where one can sit by the edge, have a picnic or just relax admiring the scenery. At the dock, it is also possible to rent a boat and explore the surface of the lake.
Another boast of the park is the White Bridge otherwise known as the Lover’s Bridge. From here it is possible to look out over the lake.
One of the most beautiful areas is the Patio Andaluz with its beautiful fountain and the La Glorieta gardens which combines both roses and vines. You can enjoy the fountains that are distributed throughout the garden and also the Poet’s green with its many busts which honour famous writers from around the world.
With over 18,000 roses, the rose garden of Buenos Aires is truly a unique place. If your are lucky enough to visit, make this is one of your things to do in Buenos Aires.
9. Explore The Beautiful San Telmo Fair
Situated in the oldest neighbourhood of Buenos Aires, The San Telmo Fair takes place every Sunday and is a great place to explore. Situated along the full leangh of Defensa Street, between Plaza de Mayo and Plaza Dorrego, this caravan of unique artisans offer antiques, artwork, tango shows and a uniqueness not found anywhere else.
Here in the San Telmo Markets you will find all kind of souvenirs, from old jewelry and handmade clothes to mate cups, paintings, leather goods and a thousand other things.
The market also offers delicious food, such as the popular sausage sandwich (named chorizo), Asado and the famous Alfajor. The San Telmo markets are lined the entire way by restaurants and bars which you can pig out on as you shop.
San Telmo and the surrounding areas also have amazing old buildings, showing the beautiful architecture of by gone centuries. All in all the San Telmo Markets are a must when visiting Buenos Aires.
10. Browse the Artwork at the MALBA
The Latin American Art Museum of Buenos Aires is located in the historic Figueroa Alcorta Avenue, Palermo. Its mission is to collect, preserve and promote modern and contemporary Latin American Art.
The 4 floor building has a unique architectural design and inside you will find a museum, a restaurant, an auditorium and also a shop where you can buy souvenirs. Additionally, numerous exhibits and activities are displayed throughout the museum.
Outstanding paintings, sculptures, photography, prints, drawings, and illustrations are all here. If you are an art lover, include this spectacular Art Museum on your list of what to do in Buenos Aires.
11. Eat Asado, Drink Malbec & taste Dulce de Leche Alfajor
If Asado, Malbec, Dulce de Leche and Alfajor are not words that sound familiar to you, then you should get to know them ASAP. This is your opportunity to know all the delicacies that Buenos Aires has to offer. This gastronomical delight is one of the most original and tasty things to do in Buenos Aires.
Asado is the traditional and famous Barbecue of Argentina. Intestines, sweetbread, kidney, blood sausage (morcilla), Argentinian sausage (chorizo), ribs, ribeye, steak and flank are all included. Every part of the cow is eaten in Argentina, cooked to perfection, just waiting to be devoured. Also do not miss the local sauces: chimichurri and salsa criolla, they are a delight to the tastebuds.
Asado is more than a meal in Argentina, it is a tradition, a part of their culture, and is exquisite!
There are many different ways to cook Asado. The most traditional, is to put the whole cow crucified on an iron cross and perched vertically over an open fire… sounds lovely no.
With Asado or without it, you have to try the emblematic Argentine Malbec Wine. Malbec is a red grape that grows in Mendoza province in the west of the country and is exported around the world.
Malbec wine is famous for its tasty flavor, being both bold and spicy. The aromas include red or blackberry and plums, which make the color a dark, ruby red. After you drink a glass of this wine, you will never taste wine the same way again.
Dulce de Leche Alfajor
The best way to end your Buenos Aires gastronomical adventure, is by tasting the traditional Dulce de Leche Alfajor. The Alfajor is two or more cookies filled with caramel or jam and often covered in chocolate. Even though, there are different fillings, Dulce de Leche is the most popular one.
The sticky and sweet type of caramel that can be found in pastries, croissant and of course in the Alfajores. It is absolutely delicious and is definitely one of the things to do in Buenos Aires!
12. Walk The Banks Of Puerto Madero
Next up on the list of things to do in Buenos Aires and one of the more modern places in the city is Puerto Madero. Its stylish architecture combined with the riverbank space and nature make it a unique place in the city.
Puerto Madero was the old port that became obsolete with the years and has been transformed into one of the top neighborhoods in Buenos Aires. With the latest architectural buildings and 5 star hotels, plus luxury restaurants and clubs, this area has it all.
Furthermore, you can find two ships which have been recast into floating Museums called Fragata Sarmiento and Fragata Uruguay. The Puente de La Mujer Bridge, shown in the picture above is a great opportunity for a photo.
One last thing, Puerto Madero is also home to the beautiful ecological reserve which is located on the waterfront by the rivers edge.
13. Discover Corrientes Avenue and The Obelisk
Next up on the list of things to do in Buenos Aires is to visit the might Obelisk on Corrientes Avenue. This part of the city is know is known as the street that never sleeps.
There is always something to do here on Corrientes Avenue. The road is one of the main thoroughfares of Buenos Aires and along this 8.6 km street you can find a variety of things to do, both during the day and all night long.
One of the special features of Corrientes Avenue is the sheer amount of theaters. Also it is home to Buenos Aires most popular pizzerias, ice cream shops, bookstores, cinemas and shopping malls.
Finally, The Obelisk is one of the city’s most iconic monuments. It is situated in the intersection between The Corrientes and 9 de Julio Avenues and symbolizes the metropolitan heart of the city.
Made solely of white stone, the obelisk was first raised on May 23th 1936, as part of the celebrations of the founding of the city. The sheer size of the Obelisk means that it can not be ignored if you walk down Corrientes Avenue.
14. Wander the roads of Chinatown
Chinatown (Barrio Chino) is located in the beautiful Belgrano neighborhood, on the north of the city. Many Asian communities live and work in this area, with the result of a largely Asian commercial section. With a stone archway at the starting point, Chinatown encompasses only a few blocks but it well worth the visit.
The town has several Chinese restaurants, grocery shops and a Buddhist Temple. Get lost in the variety of shops and find goods that you can’t find anywhere else in the city. Enjoy typical oriental street food on the go, street artists and buy unique souvenirs.
I would highly recommend this place, the atmosphere and the many different things you can discover, make this place one of the best things to do in Buenos Aires.
- The area is usually very crowded because of its small size and popularity. Avoid to go on weekends or or if you do find your self here at the weekend, be very patient.
- If you visit in the late January-February you should not miss the Chinese New Year’s celebrations. The festivities include the yearly dragon dance, martial arts demonstrations, a Korean percussion performance and also tango demonstrations.
15. Experience a Football Match in La Bombonera Stadium
Finally, on the list of things to do in Buenos Aires is to visit the heart of the people. Argentinian’s most popular game is football and their wild passion is displayed at every game. You must check out a game so that you can see it with your own eyes.
La Bombonera Stadium is located in La Boca, very close to Caminito Street and has been declared a public interest by the Government of the city. The stadium is owned by Boca Juniors, the most popular Argentinian clubs.
It is known as La Bombonera (chocolate box) for its unusual ‘D’ shape and steep sides, giving it excellent acoustics. The stadium is also lovingly called,the home of Maradona.
Diego Maradona, who played for Boca and supports the team, has his own executive box at the stadium. If you love football, this place has to be in your list of things to do in Buenos Aires.
Which of the 15 Things To Do in Buenos Aires will you see/do?
Buenos Aires is a city of long streets, gardens, culture and tango. It is a synonym of football, passion, Asado, Malbec and Dulce de Leche. If you are lucky enough to visit this city, it will be an experience that you will never forget.
Buenos Aires is a city which will delight, pick some any of the items on list of things to do in Buenos Aires and you will be in for a great time.
Have you visited Buenos Aires before? What were your favorite things to do in Buenos Aires? We would love to hear from you. Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!
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