The last two weeks have been a whirlwind. I’ve never hiked so much and seen so many breathtakingly beautiful landscapes in my life (more on that in the days to come). I really didn’t want the Patagonia trip to end but we returned to Buenos Aires on Sunday and I moved into my apartment in yesterday. I am now happily situated in the Palermo area of Buenos Aires, just a few blocks away from lovely parks. I’ll start exploring my neighborhood tomorrow… probably with with a trip to the grocery store.
My roommate from the Patagonia trip, Lynne, was staying in Buenos Aires for an extra day so this morning we went to the famous Recoleta Cemetery for a walking tour. The blazing sun made it necessary for me to hop from one shrinking shade to another as we wove our way through the cemetery, but it was well worth a few patches of sun burn on my back. Our guide, Marta, really knew her crypts, coffins, historical figures, and legends. We spent about an hour and a half visiting some of the notable mausoleums and family tombs of the rich and famous.
Marta told us that a mid-size lot/mausoleum can go for ~ $35,000 to $40,000 USD and would hold up to 18 coffins, which are all housed underground in the basement. The cemetery was started in 1822 and you can find past presidents, notable dignitaries, society types, as well as academics all within a short walk from one another. We had a quick stop at the Duarte family mausoleum where the only sign of Evita, arguably the most famous Argentine was a small plaque at the bottom. It definitely was underwhelming in comparison to some of the elaborate and massive tombs we saw.
I know that it’s a cemetery but I loved it. I know I’ll be going back when the weather is a bit cooler to wander the maze-like alleyways and get lost in the shadows. I spotted plenty of benches where I can sit and read for a while. I’m looking forward my return visit.
After the tour Lynne and I walked across the street to Cafe Victoria for a bite to eat, and we spent the rest of the afternoon chatting about nothing and everything. I was a bit sad to see her leave but I know I’ll see her again in New York. It was a pleasure to have spent the last two weeks traveling with her and I hope there will be a lot more hiking in our future, whether it be in the Chilean Patagonia or in upstate New York.
Thanks for being such a thoughtful and fun roommate, Lynne!
Cementerio de la Recoleta: Free tours in English on Tuesdays & Thursdays, free admission. Address: Junin 1760, entre Guido y Vincente Lopez
Cafe Victoria: Three course lunch, including cover charge and one drink for $85 ARP (~$20 USD). The food wasn’t the best but their location is great. Wonderful shady area outside under a 200 year-old tree, service with a smile. Address: Roberto M. Ortiz 1865 at Quintana. Open all day.