Jake Muniak’s love for travel and culture took him from our Seattle office to our Buenos Aires office. During his time in Argentina, he’s managed to live like a local, which has contributed to his newly found love for Argentina. Read on for an insider’s take on the 5 Things You Must Know about Argentina.
I have been living in Buenos Aires for about two months now. When you are plucked out of your comfortable culture and dropped into a radically different culture, your senses start to work differently. Instead of just admiring the beautiful Parisian-style architecture in Buenos Aires, I wanted to know more. I wanted to live like a local and experience the city as a local. So instead of me telling you everything I’ve learned, I thought I’d go straight to the source and ask one of my good friends from Buenos Aires what she would want the world to know about Argentina.
1. Argentina is the best country in South America
Whatever country you are in, every local there will tell you their country is the best country in South America. The pride that South Americans have in their country of origin is unrivaled. It is no different here in Argentina. While they have respect for other nations in South America, they firmly believe Argentina is the best.
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2. Argentina is the most beautiful country in South America
Believe it or not, this is not necessarily related to the first point. My friend walked me past a map of Argentina and she pointed west to the mighty Andes Mountains that separate Argentina from Chile and she told me of the breathtaking vistas of Mendoza’s vineyards. She then pointed south, to the stunning landscape in Argentina’s Patagonia region, and the beauty in El Calafate and El Chalten. Then she pointed north to Iguazu Falls, one of the Natural Wonders of the World, located in a National Park that Argentina shares with Brazil and Paraguay. And she certainly didn’t forget to mention Ushuaia, the gateway to Antarctica and the southernmost city in the world.
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3. Argentina has the best food in the world
I’m starting to see a pattern here, although I have to admit, when walking the streets of Buenos Aires and smelling the fresh aroma of steak and cheese filled empanadas, I find it hard to argue with this point. I’ve had the best steak of my life here in Argentina, not to mention Patagonia’s specialty cuisine, succulent lamb. You really cannot go wrong ordering steak in Argentina. Pair it with a glass of Malbec from Mendoza and you’ll need nothing else in this world.
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4. Everyone in Argentina has family from Italy or Spain
Although Argentina is named “the Paris of South America,” everyone seems to have family from Italy or Spain. You hear the Italian and Spanish influences in the music, the romantic Italian opera playing softly in an Argentine restaurant. You taste it in the food with the rich variety of pasta. You see it in the people and how they stop to talk with each other on the street and greet one another with a smile and a light touch of right cheek to right cheek as a hello. Things tend to move slower here and I can tell that they value relationships more than any culture I’ve ever seen.
5. Argentines are passionate!
I agree wholeheartedly with this. Argentines are passionate about everything! You see the passion that fills this country every day. Whether it be in the country’s iconic Tango dance or the very vocal protests in front of the President’s palace. Then there is futbol (soccer), people here are extremely passionate about futbol, Argentines live and breath their favorite teams.
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After you’ve seen Argentina’s most beautiful destinations, sampled the most delicious cuisine of your life, lived the European influence in Buenos Aires and experienced the passion for relationships that are valued so highly here, you’ll leave this country feeling refreshed and with wonderful memories (and recipes) to bring home.
Excited about Argentina yet? Call us today and any of our expert Travel Consultants would be happy to help customize your next South American trip. Seamlessly combine all the wonders of Argentina, with the powerhouse country Brazil, or maybe a side trip to Chile. Anything is possible with the help of SouthAmerica.travel.