· Experience Argentina’s history in the Plaza de Mayo by the Casa Rosada
· Go into the ruins of the old fort at the Museo del Bicentenario
· Drive along the Avienda Rivadavia to the Congreso de la Nacion Argentino
· Stop at the Plaza San Martin and see both the General San Martin Monument and the Monumento a los Caidos en Malvinas
· Walk along the streets of the dead in the Cementerio de la Recoleta
Buenos Aires is a special place; a small piece of Europe in South America that is imbued with Latin charm. It holds a special place in Argentina’s history and cultural scene which can intimidate the first-time visitor. A superb guide makes this all fall away, so join us as we provide a panoramic view of the grandiose eccentricity that is Buenos Aires.
The Plaza de Mayo has a special place in Argentina’s consciousness. In the centre of the colonial city, it has been at the forefront of Argentine politics since the 16th century. Starting by the Cabildo, your personal guide will take you back in time for a taste of the revolutionary sentiment in the air when it was the focus point of the May Revolution in 1810. Walking through the square to the oldest political monument in Argentina, the Pyramide de Mayo, you will hear the stories of the surrounding buildings; from the strangely classical Catedral Metropolitana to the base of Argentina’s intelligence services.
The jewel of the square though is most definitely the Casa Rosada. This pink presidential mansion has been the scene of many famous moments in Argentina’s history, not least Eva Peron’s addressing the “shirtless”; an event featured in the film on her life where she was played by Madonna. Going beneath the building, you will step into the ruins of the old colonial fort that once stood in the Casa Rosada’s place. Covered with presidential memorabilia, the Museo del Bicentenario is a great place to see interesting archaeological finds from throughout Argentina’s history.
A Cultural Centre
Prepare for a ride with your personal driver along the Avienda Rivadavia. This key artery of the city has existed since the 19th century and is a superb place to witness Buenos Aires’ own unique version of chic. There is even a chance to experience Argentine café culture at its finest at the Café Tortoni. This unique establishment feels like a little piece of Paris in Buenos Aires and has been a great place to unwind since it was founded in 1858.
At the end of the route along the Avienda Rivadavia, you can stop for a walk outside the Congreso de la Nacion Argentino. This grand building, with a distinctive dome, has been the base of Argentine lawmakers since the early twentieth century and your guide will be able to show you the building’s artistic allegories. You will also be able to see some important artwork – including an original casting of Rodin’s The Thinker – in the Congressional Plaza just outside the building. Popping back into your car, there will be the opportunity to see the Teatro Colon; a majestic building which has played a central role in Argentine cultural life for over a century.
City of Memory
Going to the Plaza San Martin, you will be visiting the site of a crucial battle in Argentina’s history; where the British General Whitelocke surrendered to the colonial forces in 1807, leaving the park with the nickname “Field of Glory”. Since then, it has only grown as a national site for Argentinians, and an excellent place to observe its very nuanced relationship with Britain. The location of the main memorial to the 1982 conflict, it also has a grand monument to Founding Father José San Martin and the Torre Monumental; a red-brick tower that locals still call the Torre de los Ingleses.
Going for another drive in your private car, you will be able to see the famous Cementario de la Recoleta at sunset. This vast and brooding necropolis, a haven for the city’s wild cats, holds tombs with many interesting stories. Hear your guide speak of them, from Luis Vernet – Governor of the ill-fated Puerto Luis colony – and Rufina Cambaceres, who was reportedly buried alive in 1902.