Top 10 Attractions in Buenos Aires

VOICE OVER: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Michael Wynands
Don't cry for us, Argentina, you're awesome! Welcome to MojoTravels, and today we're counting down our picks for the Top 10 Attractions in Buenos Aires.

For this list, we're looking at the must-see sights and destinations for anybody visiting the beautiful capital city of the famed South American country .
Top 10 Attractions in Buenos Aires

Don’t cry for us, Argentina, you’re awesome! Welcome to MojoTravels, and today we're counting down our picks for the Top 10 Attractions in Buenos Aires.

For this list, we’re looking at the must-see sights and destinations for anybody visiting the beautiful capital city of the famed South American country .

#10: Café Tortoni

Cafe culture can be found and appreciated in most major cities nowadays, but this isn’t just another trendy place to get a coffee. This iconic institution has been around since 1858 and is considered to be among the most beautiful cafes in the world. A must-visit for any lover of coffee, history or architecture, Tortoni is intimately intertwined with the culture of the city (past and present), having served as a meeting place for artists and thinkers for over 150 years. Though its popularity with tourists may somewhat diminish its charms, Tortoni remains an essential for any traveler. You owe it to yourself to experience its sumptuous decor firsthand and sample its delicacies.

#9: Plaza Dorrego

Buenos Aires’ second oldest Plaza, Dorrego dates back to the 18th century. The square is a testament to the city’s deep roots and a living reminder of just how much it has changed over the centuries. Plaza Dorrego was previously known as “Hueco del Alto” or “Alto de la carretas” - both references to the fact that it was a resting place for wagons passing through. A public square since the 19th century, Plaza Dorrego is the heart of its neighborhood, lined with bars, cafes, restaurants, and shops in historic buildings. In the square itself, you’ll often find musicians and dancers, as well as flea market on Sundays. In short, it’s magical place to experience community and culture.

#8: Puerto Madero

Though Buenos Aires is rich in cultural history and architectural sights, it’s not without its modern attractions. Puerto Madero is unlike anything else that you will find in the city. After its construction in 1897, the port was really used for only about 14 years before it was replaced by Puerto Nuevo. What followed was nearly a century of neglect and decay. In the 1990s however, it received a long overdue facelift and is now a showcase of the most modern architecture in Buenos Aires. It’s a high-end luxurious waterfront neighborhood, but while you likely can’t afford a second home there, the promenade, green spaces, and overall atmosphere makes it a fantastic place for a relaxing stroll.

#7: La Bombonera

Sports fans… this one’s for you. As you may know, soccer is massive in South America. Whether you follow the sport or not, you owe it to yourself to experience soccer culture firsthand during your stay in Buenos Aires, and there’s no better place to get a crash course than at La Bombonera. Named so because of its distinct shape (it looks like a box of chocolates), La Bombonera is among the most recognizable stadiums in the world and is famous for its incredible acoustics. It’s the home of Boca Juniors, one of the most celebrated sports clubs in the country. If the timing of your trip allows you to watch a game… it’s an absolute must.

#6: Palermo & Jardín Botánico

There are some cities in which you’ll spend most of your time in one area; Buenos Aires is not one of them. This is a city composed of numerous distinct neighborhoods, each with something special to offer. Palermo is the city’s largest barrio (ie. neighborhood) and is one of the most popular destinations for locals and travelers alike. The area is home to restaurants, cafes, art galleries, museums, shops, markets, and more, making it one the city’s most vibrant environments. There’s a lot to see and experience, but the botanical gardens are a clear standout; the over 17-acre plot of beautifully manicured land is home to 5,500 plants, as well as greenhouses and various monuments.

#5: San Telmo & The National Historical Museum

As we were saying, you’re going to explore a number of different neighborhoods during your trip to Buenos Aires. And San Telmo bears the distinction of being the city’s oldest barrio and it’s got the historical architecture to match. As you wander its fairytale cobblestone streets, you’ll pass cafes, antique shops, restaurants, tango parlors, and more. The neighborhood is modest in size, but it’s jam-packed with things to see and discover. It’s a vibrant hub of culture day or night, but antique lovers will want to go on Sunday when the market takes place. San Telmo is also home to the National Historical Museum, a great place to learn about the history of the country - particularly the revolution of 1810.

#4: Plaza de Mayo

Arguably the most iconic square in all of Argentina, let alone Buenos Aires, Plaza de Mayo (or May Square) is where the revolution that earned the country its independence kicked off. Today, a white obelisk, the Pirámide de Mayo, stands tall at the center of the square, in honor of that history. Plaza de Mayo is the heart of the city, continuing to play host to protests and celebrations alike. Both of historical interest and equally relevant today, the Plaza de Mayo is surrounded by important buildings and monuments: including, but not limited to the Metropolitan Cathedral , City Hall, the Cabildo and Casa Rosada, the stunning executive mansion of Argentina’s president.

#3: La Recoleta Cemetery

You've surely been to a cemetery before, but . . . not one like La Recoleta. What sets this particular place of rest apart from your average cemetery is its tenants; La Recoleta is the where the rich and affluent people of not just Buenos Aires are entombed, but of all of Argentina. And let’s just say… they do it in style. When seen from above, the cemetery looks like a little neighborhood… and a wealthy one at that. Rows upon rows of elaborate mausoleums, statues, and vaults in all manner of clashing architectural styles come together to make for a truly one of kind environment. It’s all pretty overwhelming, but also undeniably extraordinary.

#2: Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes

So well-curated is the Fine Arts Museum of Buenos Aires, it garners comparisons to the Louvre - just on a smaller scale. It boasts an impressive collection of works by the European greats, including van Gogh, Rembrandt, Picasso, and Degas - just to name a few. One of its biggest appeals, however, is that it provides an opportunity to get up close and personal with some of the most iconic works of famous Argentinian artists like Eduardo Sívori, Antonio Berni, and Benito Quinquela Martín, among others. It also doesn’t hurt that the building is a work of art itself! And did we mention that it’s free?

#1: La Boca & Caminito

Located in the Southeast, La Boca is an interesting barrio. On the one hand, it remains one of the poorer neighborhoods - it’s not the sort of place travelers usually visit at night. Nowhere else in the city, however, will you find more vibrancy, color or life. Laughter and music seem to fill the air as you navigate the cobblestone streets and brightly-painted houses that have made La Boca a major destination for photographers. It’s crowning gem is Caminito, a street museum in an alleyway, full of art, sculptures, and dancers. It’s a surreal space. Be respectful of the locals and mindful of your surroundings, and La Boca might just become your favorite spot in Buenos Aires.