Gran Buenos Aires: San Isidro
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
For the past couple of months I have stayed within the city boundaries of Buenos Aires. I just figured that I have a lot of time to tour the country and take on new adventures, so I stuck around and tried to really get to know the city.
Before venturing here, I had read that the city is a ghost town in the summer months (January and February). My travelmates and I made plans to visit the coast or the mountains, Iguazu falls or Las Pampas. However, now that summer vacation has officially started, the city still does not sleep. Even though it´s a little quieter, being Latin America´s third-largest city means that it will always be busy.
Even though it is nice to still be a part of the vibe, it´s even nicer to get away from it. On Sunday, my friend brought me to a barrio called San Isidro and it was a nice change of pace. It lies just outside the Capital Federal, in the Greater Buenos Aires Area, or Gran Buenos Aires. We were fortunate to take the car there. The drive allowed me to observe the monumental mansions to my left and the peaceful coastline of the river to the right. For those without the luxury of a car, you just have to take a train from Retiro Station, stop off at Olivos and take Tren de la Costa to San Isidro Station. It sounds simple enough and it is every bit worth it when you get there.
San Isidro used to be where government officials and affluent, British settlers kept their weekend houses. As a result, the bays are filled with NautiClubs (yacht clubs), clean and classic pubs, sparkly restaurants, and the famous Catedral de San Isidro. The church sits atop a small hill, overlooking the vibrant greenery of the barrio.
We sat inside at my friends´ house, sipping mate and talking politics. It was a different way of life here. Everything was calm and tranquilo, chill and relaxed.
It may not be everyone´s calabaza (gourd cup for mate) of mate, but I think it is a nice change of pace from the hustle and bustle of downtown Buenos Aires. There are a lot of things to do there and a artesanal fair on Sundays. If you get one free day, take a breath of fresh air in San Isidro.
By Brit Weaver
About the Author
Toronto born and based, Brit is an avid leisure cyclist, coffee drinker and under-a-tree park-ist. She often finds herself meandering foreign cities looking for street eats to nibble, trees to climb, a patch of grass to sit on, or a small bookstore to sift through. You can find her musing life on her personal blog, TheBubblesAreDead.wordpress.com.