Argentina, known to many as the most European of all South America, is situated in the southern hemisphere next to Chile and south of Brazil.The population of this vast and natural resource rich, beautiful country is estimated at just under 40 million. The color of the flag denotes the color of the big sky; one feels surrounded by a big bubble under it. The “pampas” or flat lands are home to rich soils, a great amount of farm land, ranches and the traditional succulent beef cattle. Argentina arguably produces the best beef products world over. To the west side of the country lie the rugged Andes mountain range and to the south is the rolling and in some areas very green Patagonian lake district landscapes. The center of the country opens up to the southern Atlantic ocean and borders Uruguay through the large mouth of the Rio de la Plata. (River of Silver) Temperatures are very mild for the most part ranging from 90 F to 68 F in summer season to 54 F to 39 F in the winter season. Seasons are cooler in the southern Patagonia and at the higher altitudes.
Buenos Aires is the largest metropolitan area estimated at approximately 13 million. The population is 97% caucasian mainly of Italian and Spanish descent. The currency is the Argentine Peso approximately $1 US dollar to 3 Pesos. The country’s political history has been plagued with years of military totalitarian rule and most recently economic collapse. The country is on the mend after years of turbulent governments one can still go to the Casa Rosada (the government house in Buenos Aires) and see the “Mother’s of the Disappeared” peacefully march every Thursday to let the people in charge know they will not forget. The country is rich in historical memory of a by-gone era of opulence. Buenos Aires has many monuments, museums, opera houses and of course the graves of their beloved Eva Peron (Evita) and the most famous tango singer Carlos Gardel. No visit to Buenos Aires would be complete without seeing a live tango show; romance fills the air. The capital is a gorgeous city full of French Colonial architecture and giant sycamore trees. The earthy strong yet flavorful red wine is more than just fine with a cut of the thickest juiciest beef; cooked on the traditional wood burning brick “asados.” (barbeques)
The Argentines are excellent cooks and one can tell by a dining experience there that they enjoy the finer things in life. Argentine people are conservative, mannerly, family oriented and proud. They put great importance on appearances. Pack some nice clothes as you would feel more at home in them. The “Castellano” Spanish dialect is certainly infused with Italian phrases.Some fantastic areas to explore are to the north: the giant IguazuFalls which border Brazil, Mendoza to the west is excellent wine growing territory, the relaxing gorgeous mountainous vistas in the Patagonia and just to the west a short ferry ride to Colonia, Uruguay certainly, a must-see town.
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