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Gay Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires,

Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina, is rapidly becoming the most gay-friendly city in South America. Because the original layout of the city center was fashioned after the French capital with wide, tree-lined boulevards, it has earned the nickname as the "Paris of the South America". Despite some recent inflation, Argentina still remains one of the most attractive places for vacations on a reduced budget. In 2002, same-sex civil unions became lawful in Buenos Aires and currently same-sex marriage is before the Argentine Supreme Court for consideration. The Gay Buenos Aires Pride Parade takes place early in November and is growing in size, attendance and importance with each annual event.

Buenos Aires does not have one specific gay village as the LGBT community is spread throughout the center of the city. The districts of Recoleta, Barrio Norte, Palermo, and San Telmo are very gay with most of the local gay establishments and clubs being found in these areas. However, many gay places are within an inexpensive taxi ride of each other. These districts of Buenos Aires are some of the safest zones of any major city in South America and visitors should feel secure walking around day or night. However, sensible precautions should never be abandoned. Buenos Aires offers a wide range of gay and lesbian guesthouses plus bed and breakfasts as well as the straight-friendly Axel hotel. Most other hotels are gay-friendly in Buenos Aires. Hotels range from small boutique hotels to 5 star deluxe hotels. A very common and inexpensive home-away-from-home is a vacation apartment rental. Several gay-owned and operated agencies specialize in these suite rentals to the gay and lesbian traveler. Buenos Aires also has an abundance of inexpensive gay and lesbian hostels, inns, and accommodations for younger gay and lesbian travelers or those traveling on a limited budget. Buenos Aires is growing in popularity amongst the LGBT community as an exciting travel destination probably due to the diversity of attractions which the city offers. The nightlife begins at midnight and continues until dawn most nights of the week ensuring the city's reputation for fun and excitement. The locals, known as Portenos, are extremely liberal and welcoming to gay tourists. Plus Buenos Aires is the world capital of Tango and whether you participate in Tango classes or just sit back and observe, it is a memorable experience. Tango has been described as “the vertical expression of horizontal desires” which is probably the best reason not to miss a show while visiting Buenos Aires. El Caminito in La Boca is the original home of the Tango. The Palermo neighborhood is the newest trendy, very gay and popular part of town with cobblestone tree-lined streets plus an abundance of original architecture being restored. It is now the home to many boutiques, outdoor cafés, bars, and designers. It is also the home of the Eva Peron Museum and the city's largest green park lands. The upscale Recoleta neighborhood is mostly high-rise buildings with fashionable shopping, luxury hotels and gourmet dining. It's also home to the Buenos Aires Design Centre. Nearby Barrio Norte is a popular gay community for those on a smaller budget. No visit to Buenos Aires would be complete without a trip to the Sunday Antique Market in the very gay San Telmo community. The streets are closed to traffic allowing great entertainment, performers, buskers, and specialty foods like empanadas, a traditional pie with a variety of fillings.

Buenos Aires now has a total of over sixty gay discos, restaurants, cafes, bars, hotels, saunas, and movie theaters frequented by the best-looking Latin men to be found anywhere. Argentina is renowned for beef at the Parilla Restaurants and Buenos Aires is no exception. Here a variety of meats and sausages, (chorizos) are cooked on a wood fired grill known as an asado. Reasonable prices and a great big steak are guaranteed to satisfy any appetite.

Getting around the city is easy but the local GMAPS 360 is recommended as a gay guide. Buenos Aires offers a wonderful subway and bus system for approximately 30 cents per ride. Plus taxis are extremely reasonably priced and east to find. The local “Hop-on, Hop-off” yellow tourist bus is a great way to get oriented to this large metropolis in under three hours. On a thirty minute schedule the buses circle the tourist attractions. But the greatest pleasure is surely just a leisurely stroll around the city to discover the many sights which this European styled city offers.

The temperate climate in South America makes Buenos Aires a year-round gay vacation destination. Sidewalk cafes, Argentine beef Parilla grill-restaurants, and inexpensive shopping make this a totally fabulous, affordable gay destination.

So put on your dancing shoes and be ready for a very gay-friendly happening in Latin America's new LGBT capital of fun.

Content provided by Roy Heale.

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