Pinching pesos in Buenos Aires



Description:

Luckily for the peso-pinchers out there, Buenos Aires is chock-full of free and cheap activities and dining options, granted you know where to go and how to get around. Tour the city and get some serious cultural flavor on the dirt-cheap bus and subway rather than in taxis, and enjoy the numerous free parks and gardens, just like the locals. Grab yummy, quality street food from roadside carts to keep your costs down, or try dining at restaurants that serve gigantic portions and encourage sharing, such as San Telmo's Desnivel or Piola, just off of trendy Avenida Santa Fe. Take advantage of free Wednesdays year-round at the world-class MALBA contemporary art museum, as well as the Wednesday night budget-friendly Club Museum specials.

Author: elizabeth


Amerika

Location:

Gascón 1040
At Córdoba
1425 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: 5411 4865 4416


Day 1 - Buenos Aires


Begin your shoestring trip browsing through artisan craft stands and snapping photos in La Boca’s colorful harbor. Avoid grabbing a bite to eat down here - prices are set for the tourist set and even just a simple lunch could blow the day’s budget. Catch a glimpse of couples dancing tango and traditional gaucho dance performances along El Caminito before hopping on the bus up to the Reserva Ecológica. Grab some sausage sandwiches and fries at one of the food carts just outside the Reserva entrance, and, if your pockets are feeling up to it, rent a couple of bikes for a cheap hourly rate to take for a quick spin around the riverside nature reserve. Next, walk the few blocks across Puerto Madero to San Telmo, where the Sunday crafts and antiques fair is in full swing. Start at the southern end of the market, in Parque Lezama, and work your way up Calle Defensa to Plaza Dorrego, the heart of the Buenos Aires’ most festive Sunday fair. Poke around for awhile before continuing on to El Zanjón, where Sunday tours are half the time (30 minutes) and half the price (AR$10). Backtrack to the ever-popular El Desnivel steakhouse for a yummy, rough and tumble dinner of tenderloins, garlic fries, and barrel wine. Don’t miss the fried empanadas - take a few to go; they make a great midnight snack. Grab the #152 bus down on Paseo Colón for the scenic, cheap (at AR$1.25) cityview ride up to Nuñez where your cozy room at B.A. City Residencial awaits to remind you that inexpensive doesn’t need to mean that atmosphere needs to be sacrificed.


1

El Caminito

expert pick

Location:

Caminito entre Magallanes y Lamadrid.
1160 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 (0)11 4545 2073


3

Barrio de San Telmo

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Defensa 1200
1065 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 11 4312 2232 (Tourist Information)


4

Parque Lezama

Location:

Calle Defensa and Calle Brasil
1098 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 11 4313 0187(Tourist Information) /+54 11 4315 4265(Tourist Information)


5

Plaza Dorrego

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Defensa and Humberto Primo
Plaza Dorrego, at the intersection of Defensa and Humberto I
1065 Buenos Aires, Argentina


6

El Zanjón

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Defensa 755
1098 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 11 4361 3002


7

Desnivel

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Defensa 855
At Independencia
Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: 54 11 4300 9081


8

B.A City Residencial

Location:

Besares 1840
1429 Buenos Aires, Argentina


Day 2 - Buenos Aires


Start your budget Buenos Aires Monday morning off at Caballito’s bustling Parque Centenario located at the geographical center of the city. Flag down the ever-present coffee and tea carts, laden with colorful thermoses, for a plastic cup of joe for just a couple of pesos. Scoot over to the quirky Palacio de Aguas Argentinas for a strange (and free!) look at Buenos Aires’ antique waterworks system, before jumping on the subway for a one peso ride up to Palermo’s Plaza Italia, where the entrance to the lovely Botanical Gardens is located. Stroll around the lush flora and catch some rays in a quiet corner until your tummy starts rumbling for a bite to eat. The subway will carry you back down Avenida Santa Fe to Libertad, where you will find Piola, a Roman pizza chain with gourmet grub at Pizza Hut prices. Your peso-pinching evening doesn’t need to stop here - hop on the bus to Retiro where just 50 centavos will buy you a train ticket up to Tigre, the delta town just north of downtown Buenos Aires. When you pull up to the sleepy river town an hour later, make a beeline for the Trilenium Casino. Skip the gambling; snatch a stage-side table and kick back for some great free entertainment in the form of Brazilian Carnaval drummers, a Blues Brothers tribute band, or passionate tango singers. Since this place makes its money on the tables, drink prices are wallet-friendly. The train ride is significantly shorter on the return, since B.A. City Residencial is just a stone’s throw from Tigre.


1

Parque Centenario

Location:

Campichuelo y Av. Díaz Vélez
1405 Buenos Aires, Argentina


2

Palacio de Aguas Argentinas

Location:

Avenida Córdoba 1750
1120 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 11 6319 1882 / +54 11 6319 1104


3

Botanical Gardens

user rating

Location:

Santa Fe and J.L. Borges
Av. Las Heras, at Plaza Italia, across from the subway entrance
1425 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 11 48314527


4

Piola

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Libertad 1078
Capital Federal
1012 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: 54 (0)11 4812 0690


5

Trilenium Casino

Location:

1385 Peru
B1648 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: 54 11 4731 7000
fax: 54 11 4731 7009


Day 3 - Buenos Aires


Day 3 of peso pinching kicks off at the historical center of Buenos Aires, Plaza de Mayo. Make sure you’re toting your camera along for the essential snapshots of the Casa Rosada and the Catedral Metropolitana interior. Set off down the gorgeous, picturesque Avenida de Mayo, grabbing some to-go coffee and medialunas at one of the numerous cafes along the way. Stop into the magnificent Palacio Barolo, an architectural masterpiece that is now occupied by offices, and take the elevator to the top floor for one of the best aerial views of downtown Buenos Aires. Once back on the sidewalk, continue a few more blocks along Avenida de Mayo to the pretty Plaza de los dos Congresos, where a hearty choripan from a food cart will tide your rumbling belly over til later. Jump on the #86 bus on the south side of the Plaza for a quick ride to San Telmo; you’ll need to hustle over to calle Peru to catch Gibraltar’s two-for-one happy hour specials (the gin and tonics are tops) and some excellent curry or British pub grub. When the 10pm last-call bell sounds, make a beeline for bus #39 to the Armenian Cultural Center in Palermo, where 10 pesos will get you some tango lessons at one of Buenos Aires’ favorite milongas (tango halls). The tango festivities last all night long, so stay until your feet are all spin and kicked out, and then turn in for the night at the budget Bristol Hotel.


1

Plaza de Mayo

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Avenida de Mayo 800
Plaza de Mayo begins at the eastern terminus of Av. de Mayo and is surrounded by calles Yrigoyen, San Martín, Rivadavia, and Balcarce
1084 Buenos Aires, Argentina


3

Catedral Metropolitana

user rating

Location:

San Martín 27
San Martín, At Rivadavia overlooking Plaza de Mayo
1004 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 11 4331 2845 / +54 11 4345 3369


4

Palacio Barolo

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Av. de Mayo 1370
At San José, Administrative office 9th floor, desks 249-252
Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 11 4383 1065


5

Plaza de los Dos Congresos

user rating

expert pick

Location:

near Monument of The Thinker
1033 Buenos Aires, Argentina


7

Gibraltar

Location:

Peru 895
1098 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: 5411 4362 5310


8

Viruta Tango (La)

Location:

Armenia 1366
At Cabrera
1414 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: 54 11 4774 6357 / 54 11 4779 0030


9

Bristol Hotel

expert pick

Location:

Cerrito 286
C1010AAF Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 11 5252 6400
fax: +54 11 4382 3284


Day 4 - Buenos Aires


Your final day in Buenos Aires gets started at Recoleta’s lovely green Plaza Francia, where 5 pesos will buy you a tasty salami and cheese baguette from a basket-wielding sandwich vendor. Bypass the map hawkers at the entrance to the famed Recoleta Cemetery; save your pesos and just ask one of the many friendly caretakers where to find Evita’s mausoleum. Next door is the Centro Cultural Recoleta, where the numerous exhibits and installations are open to the public and completely free of charge. Pick up some of the flyers in the foyer for information on cultural center and city events, many of which are free. Cross the plaza to the Palais de Glace to see what’s on the walls - past exhibitions have included the National Salon of Painting, national photography contests, and graffiti and street art shows. Round the cemetery for a bite and a beer at Locos x el Futbol sports bar before heading up to MALBA to take advantage of the free admission Wednesdays. When the doors close at 9, jump on the bus just outside for a ride to San Telmo where Club Museum awaits with its Wednesday night After-Office deals - girls get in free, guys half-price, and all drinks are two for one before 10.


1

Plaza Francia

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Avenida del Libertador, entre Agote y Pueyrredón
1405 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 (0)11 4372 3612 (Tourist Information)


2

Cementerio de la Recoleta

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Azcuénaga 1901-1999
Recoleta District
1116 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 11 4804 7040


3

Centro Cultural Recoleta

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Junín 1930
1113 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 11 4803 1040


4

Palais de Glace

Location:

Posadas 1725
1112 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 11 48041163
fax: +54 11 48044324


5

Locos x el Fútbol

Location:

Vicente Lopez 2098
C1128ACF Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: 54 11 4807 3777


6

Museo de Arte Latinoamericano de Buenos Aires (MALBA)

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Avenida Figueroa Alcorta 3415
C1425CLA Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: +54 11 4808 6500
fax: +54 11 4808 6598


7

Club Museum

user rating

Location:

Peru 535
CP 1098 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Contact:

tel: 54 114 771 9628


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