Buenos Aires is Argentina’s capital and biggest city, as well as the country’s second-largest metropolitan region.
It is situated on the southeastern coast of the continent on the western bank of the Ro de la Plata estuary. With a population of around fifteen and a half million, the Greater Buenos Aires conurbation, which also includes numerous Buenos Aires Province districts, is Latin America’s third biggest conurbation.
Buenos Aires is not a component of nor the capital of Buenos Aires Province; rather, it is an independent district. Buenos Aires was federalized and separated from Buenos Aires Province in 1880, after decades of political strife.
Along with Mexico City and Sao Paulo, Buenos Aires is one of three Latin American cities designated as a ‘alpha city’ by the research GaWC5. In 2012, Buenos Aires’ quality of life was rated 81st in the world and one of the greatest in Latin America, with a per capita income that was among the region’s three highest.
Buenos Aires prides itself on being a cosmopolitan metropolis, home to a diverse range of ethnic and religious communities. Additionally, the city speaks numerous languages in addition to Spanish, which contributes to its culture and accent spoken in the city and in certain other regions of the nation. This is because, over the last 150 years, the city, and the country in general, have absorbed millions of immigrants from all over the world, particularly from Europe, Asia, and Latin America, transforming it into a melting pot where several ethnic groups coexist and earning it the title of Latin America’s most diverse city.
It is South America’s most visited city (ahead of Rio de Janeiro) and Latin America’s second most visited city (behind Mexico City). Buenos Aires is a popular tourist destination, with its European-style architecture and vibrant cultural scene. In 1951, Buenos Aires hosted the first Pan American Games, as well as two locations for the 1978 FIFA World Cup. The 2018 Summer Youth Olympics will be held in Buenos Aires.
Buenos Aires – Info Card
|POPULATION :||• City: 2,890,151|
• Metro: 12,741,364
|FOUNDED :||1536, 1580|
|TIME ZONE :||ART (UTC−3)|
|LANGUAGE :||• Spanish (official)|
|RELIGION :||• Roman Catholic 92%|
• Protestant 2%
• Jewish 2%
• other 4%
|AREA :||• City: 203 km2 (78 sq mi)|
• Land: 203 km2 (78.5 sq mi)
• Metro: 4,758 km2 (1,837 sq mi)
|ELEVATION :||25 m (82 ft)|
|COORDINATES :||34°36′12″S 58°22′54″W|
|SEX RATIO :||• Male: 48.94%|
• Female: 51.06%
|ETHNIC :||• white (mostly Spanish and Italian) 97%|
• mestizo (mixed white and Amerindian ancestry), Amerindian, or other non-white groups 3%
|AREA CODE :||011|
|POSTAL CODE :|
|DIALING CODE :||+54 11|
Tourism in Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires gets travelers from all over the globe on a continuous basis and provides a diverse range of cultural events, nightlife, restaurants, and pubs. As a result, you can anticipate superior service and a diverse selection of solutions.
Visitors may choose from a variety of activities, like attending a tango concert, visiting an estancia in the Province of Buenos Aires, or dining on traditional asado. Recent years have seen the emergence of new tourism circuits dedicated to notable Argentines such as Carlos Gardel, Eva Perón, and Jorge Luis Borges. Prior to 2011, major retail malls such as Alto Palermo, Paseo Alcorta, Patio Bullrich, Abasto de Buenos Aires, and Galeras Pacifico were regularly frequented by visitors owing to the favorable exchange rate. Today’s exchange rate has harmed tourists, particularly shopping. Due to the currency exchange rate and import limitations, well-known consumer companies such as Tiffany & Co. have withdrawn from the nation. Additionally, the city hosts musical events, including Quilmes Rock, Creamfields BA, Ultra Music Festival (Buenos Aires), and Buenos Aires Jazz Festival.
Buenos Aires, known for its openness and tolerance, has also developed a reputation as a “major Latin American homosexual travel center.” Argentina’s 2001 financial crisis was a significant impact, with the ensuing advantageous exchange rate drawing further international visitors. By 2003, Buenos Aires had earned the moniker “Latin America’s homosexual capital” due to the proliferation of LGBT-friendly establishments, the 2002 civil union legislation, and the openness of barrios such as Recoleta and Palermo. LGBT travel continues to grow in popularity in the city, owing to its nightlife, cultural and artistic variety, and Argentina’s 2010 legalization of same-sex marriage (the first country in Latin America).
- Alvear Avenue runs through the affluent Recoleta neighborhood and is home to many five-star hotels and embassies, many of which are converted mansions.
- Caminito has been renovated in vibrant colors by local artist Benito Quinquela Martn.
- Corrientes Avenue is Buenos Aires’ main boulevard and is inextricably linked to the Tango and Porteo cultures.
- Liberator Avenue links downtown to the city’s wealthy northwest neighborhoods, passing through several of the city’s most well-known museums, parks, and cultural attractions.
- May Avenue is often likened to those in Madrid, Barcelona, and Paris due to its exquisite Art Nouveau, Neoclassic, and eclectic architecture.
- Florida Street is a pedestrian-only street in the heart of the city.
- Avenida 9 de Julio is the world’s largest avenue; it is named after Argentina’s Independence Day.
- Parque Tres de Febrero (one of the city’s biggest parks, this one has a rose garden and a paddleboat lake).
- Botanical Gardens (among the oldest in Latin America and an easy walk to other Palermo-area sights)
- Japanese Gardens in Buenos Aires (the largest of its type in the World, outside Japan)
- Plaza de Mayo (surrounded by national and municipal government institutions, this plaza has played a pivotal role in several historical events in Argentina)
- Plaza San Martín(central to the Retiro area, the leafy park is surrounded by architectural landmarks)
- Recoleta Cemetery (which contains the graves of several historical people in Argentina, including Eva Perón, various presidents and scientists, as well as numerous members of Argentina’s famous families)
- Zoo de Buenos Aires (renowned for its collection and the Hindu Revival elephant house)
- The Cabildo (seat of government house during colonial times)
- Caminito (famous for the pastel colours and wall reliefs of Benito Quinquela Martn)
- Rosada Casa (the official seat of the executive branch of the Argentine government)
- Postal Service Central (soon to be reopened as the Bicentennial Cultural Center)
- City Council (the monumental neoclassical building also houses two libraries and a museum)
- Kavanagh building (the Art Deco residential building was the first true skyscraper in Buenos Aires)
- Metropolitan Cathedral (mother church of the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires)
- National Congress (Argentine Parliament)
- National Library (the largest library in Argentina and one of the most important in the Americas)
- National Museum of History (actual papers, personal effects of previous presidents, and recreations of historical chambers)
- The Obelisk (a municipal landmark that serves as a site for a variety of cultural activities and other events)
- Teatro Colón (an internationally renowned opera house opened in 1908)
- The Water Company Palace (perhaps the most elegant water pumping station in the world)
Climate of Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires has a humid subtropical climate, with summers that are very hot and humid and moderate winters.
Summer. January is the hottest month, with an average daily temperature of 25.1 °C (77.2 °F). Temperatures range between 28 and 31 °C (82 and 88 °F) during the day and between 16 and 21 °C (61 to 70 °F) at night. Brazil’s heat waves may reach temperatures of above 35 °C (95 °F), but the city is also vulnerable to cold fronts that provide brief periods of good weather and chilly evenings. In the summer, relative humidity is between 64 and 70%, which means that the heat index is greater than the actual air temperature.
Autumn (middle April to middle June) and spring (September to middle October) are typically moderate and variable, with average temperatures of approximately 17 °C (63 °F) and frequent thunderstorms, particularly in the spring.
Winters are mild, however suburban regions often suffer frost from May through August, in contrast to downtown Buenos Aires, which only sees it a few times every season. The average relative humidity is in the high 70% range, which means that the city is well-known for its moderate to severe fogs in the fall and winter. July is the coldest month, averaging 10.9 °C (51.6 °F). Antarctica-derived cold spells occur practically every year, and when paired with the high wintertime humidity, winter conditions may seem considerably lower than the actual temperature. On most days, the peak temperature ranges between 12 and 20 °C (54 and 68 °F) and drops to 3 to 8 °C (37 to 46 °F) at night. For a few days, southerly breezes may maintain temperatures below 10 °C (50 °F), while northerly winds may raise temperatures to over 20 °C (68 °F); these changes are usual.
Spring is very windy and variable: even in early October, heat waves with temperatures of 35 °C (95 °F) are possible. Between September and December, severe thunderstorms are expected.
Snow is very unusual in the city: the last snowfall happened on 9 July 2007 during Argentina’s worst winter in almost 30 years, when the nation was devastated by heavy snowfalls and blizzards. It was the city’s first significant snowfall in 89 years.
The city gets 1,214.6 millimeters (48 in) of precipitation per year. Rain is likely at any time of the year, and hailstorms are not uncommon.
Geography of Buenos Aires
The Rio de la Plata defines the eastern and north-eastern boundaries of Buenos Aires proper, the Riachuelo defines the southern and southeast boundaries, and General Paz Avenue defines the northwest, west, and southwest boundaries of the city. General Paz Avenue is a 24 km (15 mi) long highway that divides the province of Buenos Aires from the 203 km (78 sq mi) that comprise the city.
Except for few zones such as the Buenos Aires Ecological Reserve, the Boca Juniors (football) Club “sports city,” Jorge Newbery Airport, the Puerto Madero district, and the major port itself, the city of Buenos Aires is located in the pampa area.
Previously, the territory was traversed by a variety of streams and lagoons, some of which were replenished and others were tubed. Maldonado, Vega, Medrano, Cildaez, and White are among the most significant streams. In 1908, several waterways were channelized and improved, since flooding was wreaking havoc on the city’s infrastructure. Beginning in 1919, the majority of waterways were enclosed. The Maldonado, in particular, was tubed in 1954 and passes under Juan B. Justo Avenue.
Economy of Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires is Argentina’s financial, industrial, and commercial powerhouse. The city’s economy, as defined by Gross Geographic Product (adjusted for buying power), totalled US$84.7 billion (US$34,200 per capita) in 2011, about a quarter of Argentina’s total. According to one well-cited research, Metro Buenos Aires is the world’s 13th biggest economy.
The port of Buenos Aires is one of the busiest in South America; navigable rivers connected the port to north-east Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, and Paraguay through the Rio de la Plata. As a consequence, it acts as the distribution center for a large portion of the continent’s south-eastern region. The Port of Buenos Aires processes roughly 11 million revenue tons every year, while Dock Sud, located just south of the city, processes an additional 17 million metric tons. Tax collection connected to the port has been the source of several political conflicts in the past, including a dispute in 2008 that resulted in demonstrations and a strike in the agricultural sector in response to the government’s decision to increase export duties.
The city’s services industry is diverse and developed by worldwide standards, accounting for 76 percent of GDP (compared to 59 percent for the whole country of Argentina). Advertising, in particular, is critical to the domestic and international export of services. However, the financial and real estate services industry is the biggest, accounting for 31% of the city’s GDP. Finance (about a third of this) is critical to Argentina’s financial system, accounting for roughly half of the country’s bank deposits and loans. In Buenos Aires, almost 300 hotels and another 300 hostels and bed & breakfasts are licensed for tourism, and about half of available rooms are in four-star institutions.
Manufacturing remains a significant element of the city’s economy (16%) and is situated mostly in the city’s southern section. It benefits equally from strong local buying power and a plentiful supply of trained workers as from its proximity to huge agribusiness and industries just beyond the city boundaries. Since 2006, roughly 3 million m2 (32 million ft2) of building has been approved yearly in Buenos Aires, making it one of the most reliable gauges of the country’s economic fortunes. The metropolitan region of Buenos Aires processes or manufactures meat, dairy, grain, tobacco, wool, and leather goods. Other significant industries include vehicle manufacture, oil refining, metalworking, machine building, and textile, chemical, garment, and beverage manufacturing.
Internet, Communication in Buenos Aires
At phone stores, you may get a prepaid Movistar / Claro / Personal SIM card for a few pesos / for free; all you have to pay is roughly ARS20 (about USD5) for your first credits. Inserting the SIM card into an unlocked mobile phone should work, although you will need to enter your passport (or any other 9-digit) number to register the SIM – you will then have your personal Argentinian phone number, which is extremely useful for communicating with other travelers, either by phone or text message. Calls are around ARS1 per minute.
Receiving calls is often free, with the exception of international calls and certain cross-network / inter-city calls; so, purchasing a SIM card only to communicate with individuals abroad may be unnecessary.
To refill, tiny cards with secret numbers may be purchased at several kiosks. Dialing *444, pressing 2 followed by 1, and inputting the secret number works if you have a prepaid Claro SIM card.
Not connected to mobile phones, comparable cards with international calling credits are available. They are available at so-called locutorios, which also include phone booths. You dial a toll-free number to activate the service, followed by your secret credit card information and the international phone number you want to contact. A one-hour call to Europe will cost around ten pesos when using these cards (3 US-Dollars). Avoid calling without such cards or even from your accommodation – the cost will be much higher.
Argentina’s phone numbering system is incomprehensibly confusing for foreigners.
- Directory Listing (The White Pages): 110
- International Operator: 000
- National Operator: 19
- Collect National Calls: 19 from regular phones, *19 from public phones
- Mobile phone numbers start with 15
- Regional code for Buenos Aires: 11
- Official Time: 113
- Consumer Advocacy: +54 11 5382-6216 or 6217
Except for the official time service, all two- and three-digit numbers are free (113).
Except when calling from a mobile phone, all 0800 numbers are toll-free.
Long distance calls from Argentina: You may call the United States of America using a calling card at a rate of ARS0.18/min or ARS0.59/min.
Numerous cafés and eateries provide free Wi-Fi in exchange for an advertising in their windows. All you have to do is purchase a cup of coffee and get the password.