South America Day 12 - Buenos Aires

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January 20th 2019
Published: January 21st 2019
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Today we are going sightseeing in Buenos Aires. There will be no guided tours, just us and my well annotated copy of Lonely Planet.

We start with the cathedral, former manor of the Pope. Then try to get a tube from Catedral underground station. It sounds foolproof, seeing as we’re already at the cathedral. But somehow we manage to overshoot and end up at Peru, which is on a different line. By the time we realise, we’ve already passed through the barrier so have to retrace our steps, buy more tickets and try again.

Second time lucky, we find the station and catch the tube to Palermo. This morning is all about parks. We walk through the Eco Parque, with its cute maras grazing by the lake, to reach the Parque 3 Febrero. It’s heaving on a Sunday morning; walkers, joggers, cyclists, skaters, yoga, aerobics, weightlifting. It’s all going on here, there’s even a man playing the bagpipes. The highlights are the rose garden and the Japanese garden.

Next we visit the Museum of Latin American Art. As the name suggests, it’s a collection of art by Latin American artists. The old man is not a great art lover but there is some great stuff here. Even he is impressed. The temporary exhibition is by Pablo Suarez. His work is clever and a little bit crazy, which is just how I like things.

We stop briefly at the Floralis Generica, a huge metal flower sculpture that opens in the sunlight. It sits in a pool of water and reflects the nearby buildings in its silver petals.

Next is the Museo de Bellas Artes. This has some South American and plenty of European art. The temporary exhibition is by Turner, on loan from the Tate, so ironically we have paid to see something in Argentina that we could see in England for free.

Last stop is the Recoleta, the cemetery of the rich and famous. It’s like a huge city of the dead. The cemetery only has one entrance. Somehow we manage to walk round all four sides before locating the gate some 350 degrees from where we started.

We complete our wander round the inside of the cemetery. Tired and hungry after a long day, we spot a microbrewery opposite the exit. But we are by the coach drop off point where buses leave their engines running to maintain the a/c at the required temperature for their American passengers. So we drink beer and eat our enormous burgers in a cloud of diesel fumes before dragging ourselves back across town thus completing our 10 hour sightseeing extravaganza.

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