Places in Buenos Aires  

Boundaries: Avda. L.N. Alem ("El Bajo") - Avda. de Mayo - Avda. Callao - Avda. Santa Fe.

Avda. L.N. Alem: This wide, tree-lined avenue limits with the harbor area. Includes historically significant buildings such as: Aduana (Customs), Comando en Jefe del Ejército (Army Headquarters), Casa de Gobierno (the Casa Rosada, seat of the executive branch of government), Iglesia de San Ignacio (St. Ignatius Church), Luna Park (a sports and entertainment venue). Architecturally, the area spans everything from colonial tunnels (Manzana de las Luces) to modern skyscrapers, which house important financial and commercial companies.


Avda. de Mayo: This traditional avenue runs from Plaza Congreso to Plaza de Mayo. This artery contains an abundance of legendary buildings such as: the colonial City Hall (el Cabildo), cafés (Tortoni, 36 Billares), theatres (Teatro Avenida, Teatro Liceo), and restaurants. The buildings (some with exits to side streets), domes, sidewalks and streetlamps date from the 18th and 19th centuries. This avenue was the meeting place of the Spanish community and has been the street of choice for popular marches on their way to the Plaza de Mayo. The country's first subway (Línea "A"), built in 1913, runs below this avenue.

Avda. Callao: This avenue crosses town from north to south, changing its name 3 times from beginning to end. It starts as Avda. del Libertador and as it heads south it first becomes Avda. Entre Ríos near Plaza Congreso, and then Avda. Velez Sársfield when it intersects Avda. Caseros.

Avda. Santa Fe: Beginning at the elegant Plaza San Martín, it is the boundary with Retiro, an exclusive residential neighborhood. This avenue typically showcases clothing stores.

Other avenues, streets and buildings in the area:

Avda. Corrientes: known as "the street that never sleeps". It's 70 blocks long, from "el Bajo" (the harbor area) to Chacarita Cemetery, and houses many movie theatres, cultural centers, cafés, theatres, pizza parlors and restaurants.

Plaza de Tribunales: home to the Palacio de Tribunales (judicial courts) and the Colón Theatre.

At the triple intersection of Avda. Corrientes with Avda. 9 de Julio and Diagonal Norte, is the Obelisk.

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Plaza de Mayo: the historically significant sector of town, this plaza is surrounded by some of the first buildings in the city: the Cabildo, the Cathedral, the Casa Rosada and City Hall.
Avda. Rivadavia: known as "the longest avenue in the world", it crosses the whole city and continues into several areas of the Province (state) of Buenos Aires.
The downtown area is the historical, political, administrative and cultural center of the country.

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This exclusive residential neighborhood in the center of town, located between Downtown and Recoleta, possesses narrow sidewalks typical of the colonial period, streets that slope gently towards the river, and beautiful colonial buildings such as the Fernández Blanco Museum. Some of its streets, such as Arroyo, are curved, a break with the usual colonial use of a square street grid. The neighborhood is home to several stately mansions (Palacio Anchorena, Palacio de Cancillería - which houses the Department of State-, the Plaza Hotel), as well as emblematic buildings (the Kavanagh - built in the 1930s across from Plaza San Martín, at 40 floors it was Buenos Aires' first skyscraper).


The neighborhood also showcases extremely modern urban developments such as the Catalinas Norte Towers, which house the offices of important multinational companies. Plaza San Martín is the heart of the neighborhood, with its sloping walks, ancient trees, and wide paths. Retiro is distinctive due to its local and international railroad and bus stations.

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This is one of the most elegant neighborhoods in town. It is surrounded by parks and ancient groves of trees, which continue towards the Palermo Woods. An exquisite combination of avenues filled with designer shops, first-class hotels, quality art galleries (on Avda. Alvear), famous restaurants (outdoor seating extends to Junín Street, which becomes a pedestrian street in this area), traditional cafés (La Biela), noteworthy malls (Buenos Aires Design), the appealing Plaza Francia (includes manicured lawns and a crafts market), and the ancient Iglesia del Pilar.
Nearby is the Recoleta Cemetery, which displays imposing architecture, and vaults which are the resting place of historically significant figures (Eva Perón, for instance).
Other significant buildings are the National Beaux Arts Museum as well as the Social Sciences and Law School buildings of the University of Buenos Aires. This area attracts a constant flux of local and foreign visitors.

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If you travel from Plaza de Mayo due north by Avda. L.N. Alem, you will reach Retiro. At Plaza San Martín, the avenue becomes Avda. del Libertador (Gral. San Martín). If you continue along this avenue, you will go past Recoleta and come to the "greenest" area in town: the extensive neighborhood of Palermo.

Palermo's ample geography contains innumerable parks, and has therefore established itself as the largest green area in town. These parks are colectively known as the Palermo Woods.

They include the Rosedal (Rose Garden), the Palermo Lakes, 3 de Febrero Park, the Japanese Garden, the Botanical Garden and the Zoo.

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This neighborhood also contains the Polo Fields (the main fields where this native sport is played), the City Golf Course and the Race Track.
Palermo is a residential area, dotted with public parks destined to the practice of various sports and leisurely strolling. A sweeping view of the Río de la Plata can be enjoyed from the ample apartment buildings located on Avda. del Libertador.

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Some areas of this extensive neighborhood have become nighttime gastronomical and entertainment centers. Some examples are the areas called "Las Cañitas" (next to the Polo Fields) or the recently dubbed "Palermo Hollywood" (home to several television networks and television production companies).
Strangely enough, the buildings in the "Hollywood" area are ancient and charming houses which have lured many seeking family residences to the area as well.
  Puerto Madero  

This is the most recently redeveloped area. Old docks, customs warehouses and ancient port installations have been refurbished into a modern and exclusive neighborhood that contains residences, offices, leisure craft moorings, and internationally known nightlife spots, all of which embrace the Río de la Plata coastline. It stretches from Avda. Córdoba, home of the renovated Antiguo Hotel de Inmigrantes (Old Immigrant Hotel) which now houses architecture and design shows, to Avda. L.N. Alem to the south and Avda. Paseo Colón behind the Casa Rosada.
Touring this area should prove to be a most enjoyable part of your visit.
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  San Telmo  

Thus far we've described the neighborhoods to the north of the Downtown area. If you head south, Avda. L.N. Alem changes its name to Avda. Paseo Colón, and leads to San Telmo.

This neighborhood is the oldest sector of town. Most of its sidewalks, buildings and streets clearly show signs of colonial period construction.

Many areas of this neighborhood either have been restored and/or have had traffic restricted to diminish the vibrations caused by public transportation, in an attempt to protect the ancient buildings for the enjoyment of future generations.

Plaza Dorrego a hub for local and international visitors, is the place where typical shows are staged and is surrounded by streets bursting with antique shops.

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  La Boca  

This neighborhood constitutes the southernmost limit of the city of Buenos Aires and is one of its most colorful areas. The Riachuelo River, a tributary of the Rio de la Plata, divides city land from that of the Provincia de Buenos Aires. On the province's side of the shore is a harbor (Dock Sur) and industrial area.

Until recently, boats were still used as alternate transportation to cross the river.
La Boca was originally inhabited by Italian immigrants, and it is one of the few neighborhoods that maintained its architectural and class caracteristics. Most of the current inhabitants of the colorful tenements are working class families.

This neighborhood is home to one of the most famous soccer clubs: Boca Juniors


Fans are called, "Xeneizes", the name of one of the italian dialects spoken by early immigrants. It is told that when deciding what the team colors would be, the club's founding members chose to wait for the arrival of the next boat, which turned out to be Swedish. To this day, the team sports blue and gold jerseys.
Some typical spots in this area are Caminito Street, la Vuelta de Rocha and the Costanera. All of them have been renovated, and receive a heavy influx of tourists.

A neighborhood steeped in tango. Carlos Gardel lived there, at 735 Jean Jaurés Street. The house has been well preserved and is listed in the National Registry of Historical Buildings. The name, Abasto, comes from the building that occupies the city block between Avda. Corrientes, and Anchorena, Lavalle and Agüero streets: the Mercado de Abasto (fresh food market). This was the legendary site of the first wholesale market of fresh foods. Nowadays the facades have been restored and the building has become one of the main shopping malls in town.
In this area, Anchorena Street is filled with tango clothing stores and ancient houses where tango related activities take place. There is a 100-year old refurbished café and restaurant that hosts a tango show with dinner, and a narrow pedestrian street where open air shows take place.
Building styles in this neighborhood, contrary to those in "La Boca" have changed architecturally over time, generating today's contrasting collage of vintage homes next to modern skyscrapers such as the Abasto Hyatt Hotel.

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Mataderos, meaning slaughterhouse, owes its name to the fact that since the early 1900s it has been the area where most cattle is assembled for slaughter. Another characteristic activity in this neighborhood is the Mataderos Market, where on weekends you can enjoy traditional foods, folklore shows and activities (racing for rings, etc.)

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Avda. Cabildo is one of the boundaries of this ample residential neighborhood. It can be subdivided into several areas, each with its own characteristics. Belgrano "R" is filled with wide tree-lined avenues and traditional houses with large gardens. Belgrano "C" tends toward modern apartment towers, and its geography includes hills that slope down towards the river. Near Avda. del Libertador is "Bajo Belgrano", which used to be filled with stables for the horses that raced at the Palermo Race Track. Nowadays, some of these stables have been refurbished into sophisticated entertainment venues and restaurants.
This area was, and is, so distinctive, that there exists an ancient tango which describes it, entitled "Bajo Belgrano".

This typical middle class neighborhood is the geographical center of the city. The first subway built in the country, the "A" line, starts in Plaza de Mayo and ends in Caballito.

Also interesting are the antique streetcars, which were refurbished with private monies and now run on the weekends.

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