The journey across from Uruguay to Argentina was plain sailing. After some quick stamps, we arrived in the port of Boca in Buenos Aires about an hour later, along with a big group of American tourists who were very impressed by the flags sewn onto our back packs. “Where do you buy those things?”...”Eh any shop in South America.” We grabbed a taxi and headed to a friend’s apartment in the Recoleta part of the city to stay for a few days and save a bit of money. Straight away we checked out the local cambio places to change our Dollars to Pesos. We got rate of 9.8 pesos per 1 USD which is much better than the official 5.5. Thank you US Government shutdown for driving up the rate! To celebrate our arrival and excellent exchange rate we headed straight some juicy steak and a bottle of wine which were out of this world!
The following day, after another early start, we walked to the Obelisk in downtown Buenos Aires to get in some Irish dancing and then headed down to Plaza del Mayo to see the Mothers of the Disappeared, who protest weekly about their missing children who were never seen again during the military dictatorship in the 1970s. Afterwards we were lucky to get a behind the sense tour of the Irish embassy in Argentina, thanks to our friend Lisa who works there. All the office there are now huge fans of our Irish dancing skills! That evening we headed out for a couple of scoops in what can only be described as the Coppers of BA. The place was jam packed and beer was spilling all over the place. Just no Rihanna tunes!
We chillaxed all day Sunday in Recoleta and cooked some pizza with some disastrous consequences. Let’s just say one of us left the plastic base under the pizza in the oven and we were left scrapping it clean for a few hours. Delish!
Early the next day we strolled to Palermo, the posh district of Buenos Aires, and visited the Evita Peron museum and had some traditional Fish and Chips in an Irish run chipper close by. That day we also decided to head to the party hostel of Buenos Aires, Milhouse for a few nights of madness. The hostel was an almighty session, so we could only stick out 2 days there before some much needed rehab was called for!
The next day I headed to a Boca Juniors game after paying through the teeth for a ticket, but it was well worth it. The atmosphere was incredible and the 2-0 score line to Boca sent all the mad feckers home delighted! I tried my best to fit in as a local, but got a few dodgy looks throughout.
We arrived in Cordoba very early the next morning but headed straight to the hostel where they let us chill for a few hours before taking a stroll around town. Chris had been having some tooth aches for a few days (sneaky choccy every night) so we went to the local dentist where they said he needed a root canal. When they said it would only cost about €50, I nearly felt like signing up for one myself. They said to return the next day so we spent the day walking around Cordoba, which is a beautiful city with approximately 500,000 students. We decided to waste no time and went on the hunt for Halloween outfits as the big day was only a few days away. Some tourists! We kept the heads down for a couple of nights in anticipation for the few nights of Halloween and also Chris was on some antibiotics.
With weary heads, we arose mid-afternoon on Saturday and headed straight for some spag bol which helped significantly. As Saturday doesn’t come around every week, we decided it was our moral obligation to head out again, but took it a bit easier and were back circa 5am this time.
We could take no more on Sunday and bought some night bus tickets for Mendoza, the wine district of Argentina and we were on the road again after a few amazing days in Cordoba.
We rolled into Mendoza bus station at about 9am after another Jason Statham classic of a movie during the journey. We jumped into a taxi and took the short trip to the hostel which luckily allowed us to have some brekkie for free. Sweet scrambled eggs! It’s the little things that are important when money is tight. We met up with a friend Lisa, with whom we had stayed with in Buenos Aires and set about seeing a bit of the city, which was quite small. Mendoza is renowned for its famous vineyards so there is not a whole lot to see in the city itself. That evening we were treated to a huge Argentinian BBQ at the hostel which came with free wine…Success! The food coma had the Boys in Green knocked out by 11pm.
The next morning we got up early and grabbed the bus to the Maípu region and went straight to Mr Hugo, who is world famous for his bike rentals in the area. With the bikes ready we proceeded to swerve around the town visiting a total of 5 vineyards during the day, consuming God knows how many bottles of wine and picking up a lovely tan in the process. We even managed to get into the most famous vineyard completely free as they thought we were part of some tour group. Game ball! Once back at Mr Hugo’s he donated 2 bottles of wine to The Wirld drinks fund and we were off for a night out back in Mendoza.
On Thursday we headed back to Mr Hugo to grab some bikes and finish off the rest of the wineries and also learn some stuff about olives of all things. We were just listening until we got the free shot of absinthe at the end. After another 4 vineyards we headed back to drop the bikes back. Without doubt we are now serious wine experts, being able to tell the difference between a 3 year old bottle of Malbec and a bottle of Buckfast.
We didn’t get up to a whole lot during Saturday apart from strolling around the city and spending the last of our money, leaving enough for a night on the tiles and a Subway of course. A few scoops were had in a bar with some English friends before the dinero finally met its maker. Up early the next day we headed to the bus station and got the first bus to Santiago de Chile, which we were told would be only 6 hours by bus.