Well the plane rides anyway… I have arrived safely here in Buenos Aires and have been out walking the city taking in the sites and food.. I have struggled to get the internet working long enough to plan the next stages of my journey and to also get my blog underway. This will be a quick rundown as unfortunately I have not been able to upload photos. I will try again soon.
So the trip started on Tuesday when I left Melbourne at 7pm to fly to Singapore. The flight was 7.5 hours and I found it to be a pretty comfortable trip with great service. I flew with Emirates and I was very impressed. The next flight was another 7 or so hours to Dubai. Now my butt was getting sore and I was getting pretty uncomfortable sitting trying to move around and change positions where I could. I struggled to sleep with just a few micro sleeps here and there but nothing that would give me any energy.
My stop over in Dubai was a quick 1.5 hours and spent most of the time walking the leangth of the airport which is huge!! So onto the flight from Dubai to Rio de janeiro. Wow 14 hours to sit and do pretty much nothing. I was happy with the inflight entertainment. Heaps of new movies and tv series. This kept me occuipied and happy most of the time.
Finally only 3 more hours from Rio to Buenos Aires… i get to Buenos Aires and make my way through customs, hand them my passport and reciprocity fee receipt. They take my photo and my right thumb print then ask where is my hotel. I tell them then I am on my way. I pick up my bag then head out the doors into the main entrances and purchase my airport transfer with Tienda Leon. The ticket was $95 pesos (just under $20AUD) for nearly an hour trip. The bus took us to a central station then we branched off in cars where the drivers took us to our destination. I gave the address in Spanish and all went well and then the drive spoke to me in English. Once I arrived i checked in and made my way to my room in Hostel Arrabal in Monserrat. I decided to go for a private room on arrival to get my bearings. I think I had a shower and then went to bed at 11pm local time.
I didnt manage to sleep much and had to push myself out of bed. I got ready then went to head out the door around 10am and struggled so layed down for a few minutes. I pushed myself out the door to go for a walk. I ended up walking for ages down to the Parque natural y reserva. It was a nice walk just out of the city that was around 4kms.. I was starving by now and needed some food. The only thing that was near by were these small carts with hamburgers etc.. I bought a hamburger from the two guys operating the cart- well more like a trailer. I ordered as best as I could in spanish and the hamburger and drink came to $24 pesos (about $5aud). They cook the meat and bread for you then you go ahead and put on your choice of toppings out of the bowls on the table. Not the most hygenic way but it was good and I am fine!! And it was a pretty good burger with all sorts of things on there that i dont know. I know I put Radish and cabbage and some sauce of some kind. Who knows, they were a great help and kept saying de nada (your welcome). It was a good first experience because I was a little nervous to try and communicate with limited spanish.
With a full belly I made my way to Florida Street. One of the busiest streets here in Buenos Aires where there are heaps of locals calling out Cambio Cambio… Wanting to exchange US dollars at nearly double the official rate…They have very high inflation etc and cannot buy US to even travel.. I went to Movistar to get a phone sim as it was only about $8AUD and credit is cheap, no one in the store spoke english but we got there only to find the sim did not work. Then to realise it must be locked with Optus and i hadnt thought to unlock the phone.
I had paid for the sim and went on my way to call optus later to find out with the prepaid plan i am on I would need to pay $120 to unlock the phone then it would take a few days to be unlocked then i would need to do a phone restore hooked up to a computer with itunes!! The annoying part of phones and iphones.. i mainly wanted the phone for google translate but it only works online with apple they do not have an offline version yet like android. I found another one that I bought for $5 but it is a 230mb download and the wifi here is too slow.. each session wont go long enough to download and it needs to start each time..
Well enough of that!!I then went back to the hostel to shower then head out and find some food. A guy at the hostel recommended a place but I could not remember once I go to the street so ended up eating at Nonno Bachicha on defensa st. Again no one spoke english but i got to order. Thankfully the menu was in english too. I knnow a little spanish but with the jet lag and overwhelming feeling of people not speaking english makes it hard for my brain to even find the words I know. It will come and I did get to order some pork chops that had a fried egg on top of one and some grilled peppers and something else on top of the other along with fries and some other vegies. It was a very nice meal at $108 pesos (22$aud)
I made my way home via Chile street which has a cobblestone road with beautiful old buildings everywhere. Finally home then off to bed.
I woke super early and checked the internet and it was working well so I spent the time looking up bus and hostels to the next leg of my journey. I will be heading to Puerto Iguazu for a couple of nights to see the amazing Iguazu falls. Then most liked down to San Ignacio to see some Jesuit ruines. Then finally off to do some wwoffing Organic farming. I still need to book and days may change but this is my idea..
Unfortunately internet will get worse when I head north so hopefully I can manage to upload photos in the early morning when everyone hits the sack about 2am or so.. really a little frustrating when we are used to such quick internet even though Australian internet sucks compared to anywhere else… well apart from here..
I met up at 10:30 am at Plaza Lavalle for a tour with Buenos Aires Free Tours- you can find them on facebook. I cannot remember our guides name but he was great, very chilled and gave us some great information about the city and all in English. The tour went for about 3 hours and we went all the way up through to Plaza Francia and then to Cementeria de la Recoleta a beautiful old cemetarty with so many tombs- dont think thats what you call them, well they were quite fancy..Buenos Aires has so many different styles from all kinds of architecture around the world. It changes from one street to another. Its very busy and there are nearly no road rules… Motor bikes slip in the inside and over the footpath. Its very crazy and you need to watch what you are doing. There are zebra crossings everywhere but its better to give way to the cars because they dont.!!
There were a few Aussies on the the tour and I caught up with one of the guys to head out for lunch to find a steak… Unfortunately it was 4pm and the time the lunch usually finishes then they re open at 8pm for dinner. We managed to find a restaurant Telmo Mio- I cannot remember the street. I had a steak with potato and sweet potato. Very simple but the flavours were amazing. I do need to find out how to ask for the meat to be cooked medium rare because it was slightly over done for my liking..still a great meal at $110 pesos.
Finally home for shower the weather has been near 30 degrees and sunny.. Chill for a while then head out with Greg again to see some of the city at night.
Well thanks for following and sorry for the delay.. I really hope to get some photos up soon. I will update when I can.. Oh and my spelling will not be very good due to being on the samsung galaxy note and the wordpress app does not have spell correction..
Well Hasta luego mis amigos