We enter Argentina with PLN 200 in our pocket, convinced that we will swiftly do 1200 km to Buenos Aires and this amount will be enough for us to survive 2 days, which we calculate to travel. Everyone in Brazil assured us that it would be easier to hitchhike in Argentina. It turns out that it’s not true. On the first day, after three hours of waiting we travel 200 km into the province of Misiones, to the small town of Dos de Mayo. Fortunately, our driver has friends who live in the park (their home was there before it was created). We pitch a tent in their garden garden, even having bathrooms with showers in the park.
The second day is not so easy. We catch 2 for 100 km combined, waiting a total of 6 hours and changing the place many times. We give up and take a short bus ride to break the bad luck.
It turns out to be a bullseye. The next day, in 15 minutes, we catch the ride for 500 km! The next day, just the same, only this time we are going with a brand-new tractor unit that was being delivered from the factory to the customer by… a lovely Brazilian lady. For the first time we met a woman driving a truck on our route. This profession is so masculine that sometimes there are only male showers at gas stations. Finally, after 4 days, we reach Buenos on the vapors of Argentinian pesos, saved with delicious beef by a truck driver.
We spend 10 days in the capital of Argentina, walking hastily around the city. Tenements in the Baroque style and public buildings in the style of Greek temples, between which you can sometimes spot a modern office building, give the city a truly European character. We felt safe there so much, that even one day we worked in the park with a laptop. It turns out that such a security impression can be very illusory. The proof of this may be our adventure in the Boca district (we’ve posted the description on FB, and below), as well as the Argentinean relations we later heard on our way. Many people moved out of Buenos Aires because they were attacked, threatened with weapons, and their homes and shops were broken into. In addition, some transport companies use GPS security, which blocks the ability to open the truck’s door as soon as it enters the province of Buenos Aires. They can only be opened at the destination point.
One evening we get from our host’s friends an invitation to asado. It’s a traditional barbecue meeting. One person performs the function of asador, a person doing barbecue, and is responsible for preparing the coal, maintaining the heat, proper baking of the meat and its distribution. This is the whole ritual to which our Sunday grilling is not comparable. The meat is put on the grate in giant pieces, which is why it takes 2-3 hours before it is well roasted. During this time, everyone is sitting around the table, talking and drinking beer. When the time comes for the feast, every piece of meat is cut into smaller ones, thanks to which there is no race for the least burnt pone. Characteristic of Argentine barbecue meat is high fat content, so that after roasting it’s not dry. Sometimes, however, you will find a piece where fat makes up the majority, then it was too much for us.
On the last day of our stay in Buenos Aires we visited the port, where large sailing ships from most Latin American countries were stationed. Navy officers train on them and by the end of August they take part in a cruise around the continent, ending in the Caribbean Sea. Because they are sailing in the same direction as us, we try the possibility of boarding for Ushuaia. Unfortunately, civilians are not allowed to enter the crew 🙁
Delta of Parana river
The town of Tigre and the delta of the Parana River are a great curiosity neighbouring Buenos Aires. We spent one day on a trip to these regions and took a cruise with a small boat. The area of the delta was developed at the beginning of the 20th century, there are currently many summer houses of residents of Buenos Aires, but also many people live there permanently. You can only reach the houses by water, there is no land road. As a result, everything takes place by waterway. There is a floating shop, a floating ambulance, and a boat-bus navigating the creeks of Parana. Each house has its own pier, which functions like a stop on demand. There is even a school that has its own school boats. Generally, the area is very green, with pleasant grass, and the plots are neat and well-maintained.
As for Tigre, it’s a good base for exploring the delta, there is also a so-called Mercado de Frutas. On the weekends a colorful market with everything, workdays an empty promenade. We recommend buying a ticket for a boat with which you can go ashore, take a walk and get back from any other pier. Frequency of running every hour, price 150 ARS (25 PLN).
In Buenos we spent an unusually long time due to the perturbation with the shipment that we sent from Poland to Curitiba. The parcel has arrived, but we already left Curitiba. To complete the case, we ordered a courier with delivery within 3 working days, and we waited for it in Buenos Aires. Not wanting to stay too long at our host Norbert, we started looking for another Couchsurfing. We were welcomed by Indira, who had THE CAT. It’s the nicest, most fluffy and adorable creature we’ve ever met. It was a great pain to leave Buenos Aires and this furry one.
To see the lions!
Getting out of Buenos Aires takes us a lot of time, especially, that we are 5 minutes late for the train. Fortunately, in return, public transport tickets, including suburban trains, are very cheap. The only catch is the fact that you can’t buy them individually – everything works on the basis of the so-called pre-paid contactless SUBE card
After 4h from the exit from the house we reach the village of Cañuelas, from where the national road no. 3 goes to the southern end of the continent – to Ushuaia. We don’t aim that far. The next destination is near the peninsula Valdes – Puerto Madryn and seeing the sea lions!
3 curiosities on the end:
- In Argentina, men also greet each other with a kiss on the cheek. At the beginning it was quite surprising, but you can quickly get used to it, in particular, it’s more like touching your cheeks and smacking into the air than a kiss
- Suburban trains are full of sellers of everything. Literally. We felt like we were in Morocco again. You could buy, among others, snacks, drinks, scissors, cleaning cloths, DVDs with music videos, garbage bags and Bengay cream. Everything, of course, praised as the best and the cheapest. And the best thing is that the business is thriving. People really buy scissors, returning by train from work.
- At the bus stop you wait in line. There is no attack of the wild crowd on seating places. If you want to sit down, or sometimes even get on the bus, you have to stand waiting. At the beginning seats in the back are taken – on the elevation. In the low-floor part, all seats are for privileged people (this time the obese weren’t mentioned 😉 )