Argentina and Antarctica 2008/2009:
Day 1 - Buenos Aires


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Antarctica 2008: [Day 1 - Buenos Aires] [Day 2 - Uruguay] [Day 3 - Ushuaia] [Day 4 - Drake Passage] [Day 5 - South Shetland Islands] [Day 6 - Antarctica] [Day 7 - Antarctic Peninsula] [Day 8 - Antarctic Sound] [Day 9 - Drake Passage] [Day 10 - Cape Horn] [Day 11 - Ushuaia] [Day 12 - Iguaçu] [Day 13 - Iguazú]

Sunday, December 28: We arrived in Buenos Aires in the morning. We got tickets for the Tienda León bus into the city and were greeted by this welcoming sign on our way out of the airport.
Buenos Aires is a large city and we snapped photos as the city zoomed past.
Old meets new in this shot of the freeway interchange and a lovely old church.
We checked into our hotel, the Panamericano, conveniently located right on Avenida 9 de Julio.
The Panamericano is a beautiful hotel with sparkling marble floors and very helpful front desk staff. Since our cruise line had not honored our request to book an extra day at the start of our trip, we had to contact the hotel directly to extend our reservation. We made a separate reservation elsewhere since we didn't know what hotel we'd be booked in by the cruise line, just in case all hotels were booked, but it all worked out in the end.
Because we were there so early, we checked our luggage with the bellhop and headed out to explore.
We're just kidding -- we really went on a mission to eat some of that famous Argentine beef. We found it at Pizza Roma, where it turns out that they serve more than pizza. More importantly, they serve food at 11:00 AM on Sunday.
We had a couple of Coca-Cola Lights with bife de chorizo for very little money.
Back at Avenida 9 de Julio, we took the first of several hundred photos of the Obelisk.
The Obelisk is in the middle of the avenida, which features seven lanes of traffic on each side, flanked by smaller parallel 3-lane streets, so you're in for a 20-lane crossing experience to make it all the way across. We settled for halfway.
Our hotel, for example, is actually on Avenida Carlos Pellegrini.
After we checked into our room, we waited in vain for a Gray Line tour that never showed up (never, ever book a tour through the Gray Line website, gentle reader), so we headed out on foot to do some sightseeing. First sight: a McDonald's ad. What a great name for a burger: McNífica!
We took a diagonal street leading from the Obelisk to the Casa Rosada.
It was a short, pleasant walk from our hotel to the square in front of the Casa Rosada.
Here's the view looking back at our route.
Some day we'll look up the name of this plaza so Google will bring more readers to this page. That day has now come. This is the Plaza de Mayo.
At the Casa Rosada, there was a display of photographs and the guards were friendly enough to pose for a picture with young fans.
And now, ladies and gentlemen, we give you the Casa Rosada.
The best show in the town was the crowd outside the Casa Rosada crying "Eva Peron." We were neither a crowd nor crying, but we were under Evita's famous balcony which is roped off to the public.
Turning back to the plaza, here's a statue of General Manuel Belgrano.
More importantly, here's a little stand where we purchased a refreshing gaseosa. We chose Fanta since Coca-Cola Light was not an option.
Here's a jacaronda blossom artfully juxtaposed against the lovely Buenos Aires architecture.
Here's another statue of someone on the street where we turned to head back to the hotel.
Back on Avenida 9 de Julio, we took another photo of the Obelisk. Are you counting?
We passed several McDonald's restaurants during our stay. Each of them had a separate ice cream kiosk where they sold tiny vanilla and dulce de leche mix ice cream cones for less than a dollar.
Back at the hotel, here was our small but comfortable room.
Here's the opposite wall, featuring a television that offered all the Spanish-dubbed movies we could ever want.
After a quick rest and foot soak back in the hotel room, we headed out again to enjoy more of the sunny Argentine day.

Psych! We totally went out for food again. This time, we ordered jamón y queso sandwiches, but had to settle for tomato in place of jamón.

Day 2 >


Antarctica 2008: [Day 1 - Buenos Aires] [Day 2 - Uruguay] [Day 3 - Ushuaia] [Day 4 - Drake Passage] [Day 5 - South Shetland Islands] [Day 6 - Antarctica] [Day 7 - Antarctic Peninsula] [Day 8 - Antarctic Sound] [Day 9 - Drake Passage] [Day 10 - Cape Horn] [Day 11 - Ushuaia] [Day 12 - Iguaçu] [Day 13 - Iguazú]

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