Winter is well and truly upon us in Buenos Aires, and Expanish Spanish School Blog is struggling to come to terms with the dark nights, chilly days and inability to use the city’s numerous restaurant roof terraces and outdoor spaces. So we’ve come up with our top 10 tips for surviving winter in Buenos Aires.
1) Dress in layers
The Argentine winter can appear to the uninitiated, as a compilation of three seasons played out over the course of two months. Anyone who’s been in Buenos Aires over the past three weeks will have noticed the quick transition from arctic winds in late June, to spring-like afternoons in early July. Dressing in layers will allow you to add or remove clothing to suit the temperature. Plus, apparently layering is very ‘de moda’ this season.
2) Eat Locro
Disregard the steak, salad and picadas, locro is the dish to eat this winter. A warm, stew type dish, that tends to incorporate the following ingredients: Corn, carne (of course), and vegetables and lots of stock. Perfect fuel for cold evenings and dark nights.
If you want to have a go at cooking it yourself try this locro recipe
3) Celebrate Christmas
A new and at first appearance, slightly odd custom has begun to appear amongst expat circles in the southern hemisphere. Christmas in August. Those of you who are from the northern hemisphere and used to cold, miserable winters being interspersed with the color, presents, food and general fun times that Christmas brings in December, will appreciate the need for something to cheer up the winter months, so make like its December and celebrate a feliz navidad!
4) Enjoy the World Tango festival
One of the biggest festivals to take place in Buenos Aires, the annual Tango Festival y Mundial brings the world’s best tango dancers to Buenos Aires for a series of spectacular tango shows, concerts and parties that take place all over the city from 16th August through to the 30th August. If you want to try out your own tango dancing skills, the festival includes seminars, workshops and milongas.
5) Go to the theatre
A great way to practice your Spanish and escape from the cold. Buenos Aires’ main theatre district is around Avenida Corrientes, stretching from Microcentro across 9 de Julio towards Recoletta. There are a number of well known musicals showing on Corrientes at present including When Harry met Sally (Cuando Harry conoció a Sally) or The Sound of Music (La Novicia Rebelde) and but if you want to really stretch the cultural boundaries, try going to a revista, an incredibly kitsch form of Argentine variety show.
6) Enjoy a drink in the pub next to a blazing fire
This one will be best enjoyed by travelers and expats from the U.K and Ireland who may well be missing their regular visit to the local pub, where more often or not you can find a cosy spot by the fire to enjoy a drink and some hearty pub food. Expanish blog has uncovered one such spot in Buenos Aires.. The Bangalore pub in Palermo (any more suggestions welcome!).
7) Watch the Copa America
Continuing our footballing theme, you can’t have failed to notice that the Copa America is currently taking place in Argentina. A great way to while away the evenings and weekends is in front of the TV, cheering on the Argentines! For more on the tournament, visit our Guide to Copa America
8) Get Fit
In preparation for the lovely long summer that is approaching (only a few months), why not spend the winter months shaping up ready for the beach. Porteños are a body conscious bunch, hence there is a fantastic range of fitness opportunities all around the city, from Boot Camp Buenos Aires through to Pilates.
9) Drink a submarino
Take a break from mate and try a submarino. A great way to enjoy hot chocolate. A submarine-shaped, (if you’re lucky, sometimes they come in a very standard chocolate bar shape) piece of chocolate that you submerge in hot milk to create a delicious hot chocolaty drink. Available in most Buenos Aires cafés.
10) Build a house
It might not get you warm but it will warm your heart. The South American charity Un Techo para mi Pais, is looking for volunteers to take part in one of the biggest constructions in their history from 22nd July to 31st July. Sign up to join thousands of other volunteers in building houses for disadvantaged families. Expanish Blog was lucky enough to be involved in the last construction at the end of June and highly recommends the experience! Note: the forthcoming build will take place outside of Buenos Aires