This week we launched our free ebook South America Highlightswhere we share 28 of our favourite places from our year on the continent. We thought it’d be interesting to find out how our highlights compared to other travellers, so we asked a number of travel bloggers to share their best experiences and destinations in South America.
The grassy flat plains stretching endlessly south of Buenos Aires are famous for their traditional gaucho (cowboy) culture. The typical way to explore is to stay at an estancia – ranches that also offer comfortable guest accommodation and horse riding. We needed a break from the busy city and were tempted by a stay at one of these peaceful estancias but with prices of hundreds of dollars a night we just couldn’t stretch our budget that far.
We discovered that it is possible to explore Argentina’s gaucho heritage without spending a fortune and even without straying too far from Buenos Aires.
In our Cheap & Useful Resources for Learning Spanish post we shared the methods we used to study Spanish before we came to South America. Although I still think these are useful tools I now realise we were missing an essential element – actually speaking in Spanish with native speakers. We had no actual practical experience so were completely unprepared for the fast and accented language spoken by locals in Buenos Aires.
Two months later and we have improved immensely. We have a long way to go to fluency but we can communicate in most situations, which is essential now that we are travelling in Paraguay where hardly any English is spoken.
These are the Spanish learning methods that we used during our two months in Buenos Aires.
Argentina is Mad Cow crazy for its meat. In Buenos Aires, you can’t throw a porteño without hitting a parilla restaurant. Luckily for us, there is also a burgeoning vegetarian/health food scene and with a little research and some lucky stumbles, we found a whole bunch of really tasty veggie restaurants – mostly around the trendy Palermo Viejo area.
These are our favourite vegetarian restaurants in Buenos Aires. Not all of these places are strictly vegetarian but they all offer great options for meat-free meals. It’s usually a good idea to plan in advance and head to a specific restaurant or else it’s pizza night (again).
Buenos Aires! City of mystery! City of majesty! City of medialunas!
We’ve just finished our two month stint as Porteño wannabes and already we’re getting nostalgic for Barrio Norte, the residential area where we rented a beautiful apartment for two months.
Our focus was mainly on aprendering español and building up freelance work to sustain our new nomadic lifestyle, but we still found plenty of time to get out and explore the city.
And it’s a city worth exploring – we immediately fell in love with the beautiful streets; the well-dressed but friendly people; and the many things to do (and eat) – and we’d like to share with you some of our Buenos Aires highlights: