True, Buenos Aires is known for its sexy nightlife and passionate tangos, but it’s
also a great place for kids. On our round-the-world adventure, Buenos Aires has
turned out to be one of my favorite family cities (staying at Four Seasons
Hotel Buenos Aires didn’t hurt, either). Here are five reasons why you (and the kids!) should go:
1. Pizza – It’s not the traditional Argentinean dish you may have been expecting, but pizza here is like nothing I’ve ever tasted before. Head to Recoleta to sample an age-old recipe at El Cuartito, and you’ll leave full and happy. The kids can order up a simple cheese (Solamente con queso, por favor), but offer them a slice of your fugazetta (traditional onions and cheese) and you may be surprised by their reaction.
2. The cemetery – OK, not your traditional kid-friendly spot, but if you can get past the idea that this is a real cemetery, you’ll be blown away by the artistry of the place. Forget a simple tombstone with a catchy phrase, Cementerio de la Recoleta has sky-high monuments ensuring that those who rest here — including Eva “Evita” Peron — are forever celebrated. Hand the camera over to the kids for photos that will make great wall hangings when you get home. Or simply walk the cobblestone paths letting them explore the intricate designs while sidestepping the dozens of cats who call the place home.
3. The plazas – Buenos Aires has an infinite number of plazas ¬— similar to European piazzas or North American town squares. Well-designed, wide-open spaces that are meant to encourage people to relax and congregate outside. You’ll find kids — local and tourists — running through the green spaces, chasing after soccer balls and playing on the small slides and swings throughout. Our fave was Plaza San Martin, where there were big trees for climbing, plenty of benches to sit on and chat with the locals, and enough room for the kids to burn off their energy before sunset.
4. The treats – Alfajores and Dulce de Leche — The sweets in Argentina somehow taste sweeter than at home. At first, the kids screwed up their faces at the alfajores that the Four Seasons executive chef offered up, but two bites later and they had been demolished. The delicious cookies come with a variety of fillings, but our favourite was the Dulce de Leche combo that the area is famous for. You’ll find the sweet caramel filling in and on plenty of things in this city, for which the sweet treat is famous. Try them all.
5. The parks – There are parks and then there are Parks. Parque 3 Febrero is the latter. With a zoo, planetarium, endless walking paths and plenty of public art pieces to ogle, this 62-acre park offers endless opportunities for a full day out. Pack a picnic lunch and spend the day. It will only take moments for your kids to figure out they don’t need to know much Spanish to join in the fun. With animals like native alpacas and llamas to peer at, they’ll have plenty to talk about once they’re back home.
Based near Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Heather Greenwood Davis is a freelance writer whose articles appear in publications such as The Toronto Star, Canadian Family, UrbanMoms.ca and more. She recently returned from a one-year, round-the-world adventure with her husband and two sons, eight and 10. You can read about their journey and the adventures before and since at globetrottingmama.com.
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