Head to Buenos Aires for the tango halls and tasty haunts of the Argentine capital
With its infectious blend of old European grandeur and tango-fuelled passion, Buenos Aires can’t help but get under your skin. And now that budget airline Norwegian has launched direct flights to the Argentinian capital, you can hot-step your way there for far less.
The 19th-century industrial revolution led to a sudden boom in European migrants in Buenos Aires, a legacy seen in its Frenchstyle palaces and Italian-designed National Congress building. Intricate architecture threads its barrios (neighbourhoods), many painted in murals (Palermo, San Telmo) or splashed in colours that recall the way the impoverished dock workers once daubed their mismatched homes in paint left over from work (La Boca).
There is a rhythm to the streets here. Tango beats ripple from the dancehalls and milongas (tango nights), with the San Telmo area the pick of the bunch and filled with dance haunts and artists.
But the real way to the heart of Buenos Aires is via your stomach. Every corner is a carnivore’s dream. Sniff out a parrilla (grill house) serving up an array of cuts, and make room for a cone of frozen dulce de leche (similar to caramel) as you relax in palmfringed Plaza de Mayo square.
To add an emerald streak to your visit, head east to a strip of marshland known as Costanera Sur Wildlife Reserve. Here, over 150 bird species flit among a lush wilderness, as well as iguanas and river turtles. A wild ending to a budget Buenos Aires trip.
Where to stay?
Nestled in the heart of the artsy Palermo Soho is the Mine Hotel (minehotel.com/en); doubles from Us$170pn (£130).
Get there now!
Norwegian will fly four times a week from London Gatwick to Buenos Aires from 14 Feb. From £579 return; norwegian.com