Discover Buenos Aires: 10 Best Neighborhoods to Explore
Discover Buenos Aires Best Neighborhoods Reading Time: 9 minutes
Discover Buenos Aires best neighborhoods. Buenos Aires is a vibrant and diverse city with something to offer for everyone. From the historic streets of San Telmo to the trendy bars of Palermo, the 48 neighborhoods of Buenos Aires are as varied as they are captivating. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a returning traveler, really getting to know Buenos Aires’ neighborhoods is a must-do.
To help you plan your visit, I have put together a list of the 10 best neighborhoods in Buenos Aires, each with its own unique charm and character. From the bustling city center to the quieter residential areas, these neighborhoods are sure to leave a lasting impression on you.
If you’re coming to Buenos Aires, check out my Ultimate Buenos Aires 10-day Itinerary.
I have listed these ten neighborhoods (ok more like 12 actually) below in order of popularity- where travelers tend to visit, spend time, go out, seek entertainment, etc.
When you start digging into discovering Buenos Aires best neighborhoods, you will undoubtedly hear about Palermo. Everyone loves it, and with good reason. It is full of trendy restaurants, bars, cafes, and clubs. It just feels “hip.” This is one of the largest neighborhoods and is divided into 3 sections: Palermo Hollywood, Palermo Soho, and Palermo Chico.
Palermo Hollywood is in the north of the neighborhood. There are plenty of restaurants and cafes around, though it feels much more like a calm, and relaxing version of Palermo Soho. Soho is where the excitement happens. In the summers, Palermo Soho streets of full of people from afternoon to the wee hours of the morning. People enjoying the nice weather, having a drink outside with friends. This is also where a ton of expat meet-ups tend to be, as several foreigners live in this neighborhood. Because of its popularity, it also tends to be on the more expensive side if you’re looking for apartments.
One of the main attractions in Palermo are the parks: Parque Tres de Febrero, a Japanese garden, Eco Parque, and the Botanical Gardens.
Click here to read a detailed Palermo neighborhood guide.
2. San Telmo
San Telmo is one of the most historic neighborhoods in Buenos Aires, known for its charming cobblestone streets and colonial-era architecture. The neighborhood is a popular spot for tourists and locals alike, and is home to many antique shops, art galleries, and tango halls. The main attraction in San Telmo is the weekly “Feria de San Telmo,” an open-air market held on Sundays where visitors can find a variety of local crafts, antiques, and street performers. The neighborhood is also home to the fantastic Zanjón de Granados and Mercado San Telmo, a covered food market with several delicious eating options from tacos to crepes to ramen, and of course asado. San Telmo is a must-see for anyone interested in the history and culture of Buenos Aires.
Click here to read a detailed San Telmo neighborhood guide.
Recoleta is one of the most upscale neighborhoods in Buenos Aires, known for its elegant architecture, refined culture, and upscale shops and restaurants. The neighborhood is home to the famous Recoleta Cemetery, the final resting place of many notable figures in Argentine history, including Eva Peron. Visitors can take a stroll through the cemetery’s impressive mausoleums and sculptures. Just next to the cemetery, you can find the Recoleta Cultural Center, which hosts art exhibits, film screenings, and other cultural events. The neighborhood is also home to the National Museum of Fine Arts (free entrance), the Museum of Decorative Arts, and the Museum of Latin American Art of Buenos Aires. Recoleta is a great place for those who appreciate art and culture and want to see a more refined side of Buenos Aires.
The nicer parts of Recoleta are definitely surrounding the Recoleta cemetery. As you venture further away from the cemetery, and more towards Avenida Santa Fe, it starts to feel more “city”- busy, hectic, and bustling.
Click here to read a detailed Recoleta neighborhood guide.
4. Micro-Centro (Monserrat & San Nicolás)
Monserrat and San Nicolas are two places to check out while discovering Buenos Aires best neighborhoods. Located in the city center of Buenos Aires, known as the “Micro-Centro.” Monserrat is known for its government buildings, cultural institutions, and historic architecture, while San Nicolas is known for its nightlife and entertainment options. Both neighborhoods are considered more traditional areas and are home to a mix of government workers, students, and young professionals. Monserrat is home to many historical landmarks, such as the “Catedral Metropolitana,” the “Casa Rosada,” and the “Cabildo,” as well as many museums and art galleries. San Nicolas is known for its lively nightlife scene, particularly on the pedestrian streets “Florida,” “Lavalle,” and “Corrientes” (on weekend nights) which offer a variety of bars, clubs, and entertainment options. You can also find the famous Obelisco and Teatro Colon in this neighborhood. Both neighborhoods are also home to many traditional Argentine restaurants and cafes, and both are also known for their street vendors selling traditional Argentine snacks called garrapiñadas (must try!). Monserrat and San Nicolas are great places to experience the history and culture of Buenos Aires while still having access to a variety of entertainment options.
Click here to read a detailed Micro-Centro neighborhood guide.
5. La Boca
La Boca is a colorful and vibrant neighborhood located in the south of Buenos Aires. It is famous for its colorful houses, known as “conventillos,” which were built by Italian immigrants in the late 19th century. The most famous street in La Boca is “El Caminito,” a pedestrian street filled with street performers, tango dancers and artists selling their work. La Boca is also known for being the birthplace of the famous soccer team “Club Atlético Boca Juniors,” and their stadium “La Bombonera” is a must-see for any soccer fan visiting Buenos Aires, with its imposing blue and yellow paint job that can be seen from a distance. The neighborhood is also home to many museums and galleries, such as the “Fundación Proa” and the “Benito Quinquela Martín Museum,” which showcase the history and culture of the neighborhood through the eyes of one of its previous residents- Benito Quinquela. La Boca is a great place to experience the lively and colorful culture of Buenos Aires.
La Boca tends to be the most touristy area of the city. Because of this, restaurants prices in the heart of the hood are drastically more expensive than any other area. If you go outside the main tourist area, prices are much more reasonable. That said, you should also be much more cautious outside of the main tourist center of La Boca. It tends to be on the “sketchier” side, and any local will tell you as much. My phone was snatched right from my hands while having lunch at one of the local restaurants. You should go, but you should be cautious here.
Click here to read a detailed La Boca neighborhood guide.
Belgrano is an upscale neighborhood located in the north of Buenos Aires. It is known for its tree-lined streets, large parks, and elegant architecture. It’s a more residential area and is considered one of the more upscale neighborhoods in Buenos Aires. The neighborhood is home to many embassies, consulates, and foreign cultural centers, as well as several prestigious universities.
One of the great museums in this neighborhood is the “Museo de Arte Español Enrique Larreta,” which has a fantastic Spanish style garden in the back. It is free on Wednesdays. The neighborhood is also known for its many trendy cafes, restaurants and bars, and for its shopping, particularly on the Avenida Cabildo, which offers a variety of clothing, footwear and jewelry shops. Belgrano is a great place to experience a more upscale and residential side of Buenos Aires, while still having access to cultural attractions and a variety of options for dining and shopping. You can also find Barrio Chino (China Town) in the east of Belgrano, which offers several great Asian food options, Asian supermarkets, and street performers on the weekends. Belgrano has a very residential feel and is generally considered to be one of the safest neighborhoods.
Bonus: Just north of Belgrano is the neighborhood of Nuñez. It is much less popular, and rarely visited by travelers, but has a ton to offer- from great restaurants and cafes to a very safe and chill atmosphere.
Click here to read a detailed Belgrano neighborhood guide.
7. Puerto Madero
Puerto Madero is a modern and upscale neighborhood located in the east of Buenos Aires. It is known for its renovated warehouses, which have been converted into luxury apartments, trendy restaurants, and high-end shops. The neighborhood is also home to the “Ecological Reserve,” a large nature reserve that offers visitors the opportunity to take walks along the banks of the Rio de la Plata and see a variety of native plants and animals. You’ll find lots of runners and cyclists in the reserve every day. The area is also known for its modern architecture, including the “Puente de la Mujer” (Woman’s Bridge), a unique asymmetrical pedestrian bridge designed by Santiago Calatrava. Puerto Madero is a great place to relax and enjoy the river view along the Costanera Sur (get a choripan from one of the many food trucks here), or to indulge in the culinary scene and high-end shopping. It is also a good spot for photography, especially at night when the bridge is illuminated with colorful lights.
Click here to read a detailed Puerto Madero neighborhood guide.
8. Villa Crespo
While discovering Buenos Aires best neighborhoods, its only a matter of time before you stumble upon Villa Crespo. Villa Crespo is a bustling neighborhood located in the west of Buenos Aires, just next to Palermo. Known for its vibrant culture, it’s a melting pot of different immigrants communities and is considered as one of the most diverse areas in Buenos Aires. The neighborhood is particularly known for its Jewish community, which has a strong presence and has left a mark on the area with their synagogues, kosher shops, and restaurants. You can find many outlet shops, and leather shops in this neighborhood. The neighborhood is also home to many bars and clubs, particularly on the streets “Gorriti” and “Arribeños” which are known for their nightlife scene. Villa Crespo is a great place to experience the diversity of Buenos Aires and to discover the lesser-known aspects of the city’s culture. I personally love this neighborhood the most because it has the best of everything- the calm and quiet of Belgrano, but the convenience and atmosphere (just a bit more chill) of Palermo. You can easily walk a few blocks and find yourself in Palermo if you’re looking for more excitement.
Click here to read a detailed Villa Crespo neighborhood guide.
Colegiales is a residential neighborhood located in the northwest of Buenos Aires. Known for its quiet streets and leafy parks, it is considered one of the most tranquil and peaceful areas in Buenos Aires. The neighborhood is home to many families, students, and artists, and it’s considered a middle-class area. The neighborhood is known for its many bars, cafes, and restaurants, particularly on the streets “Federico Lacroze” and “Juan B. Justo” which offer a variety of dining options, from traditional Argentine cuisine to international dishes. Colegiales is a great place to experience a more relaxed and residential side of Buenos Aires, while still having access to a variety of dining and entertainment options.
One neighborhood next to Colegiales is Chacarita, and is on the verge becoming one of Buenos Aires’ next cool spots.
Click here to read a detailed Colegiales neighborhood guide.
10. Almagro & Caballito
Almagro and Caballito are two neighborhoods located in the southwest of Buenos Aires. I like to group them together because they are right next to one another and have pretty similar vibes. Almagro is known for its traditional architecture and its strong Italian heritage, while Caballito is known for its residential streets and large parks. Both neighborhoods are considered middle-class areas and are home to a mix of families, students, and young professionals. Caballito is known for its many parks, particularly the “Parque Rivadavia,” which is one of the oldest parks in Buenos Aires and offers a variety of recreational activities. On the west end of Parque Rivadavia, you can find a daily book fair. Both neighborhoods are home to many traditional Argentine restaurants and cafes. Almagro and Caballito are great places to experience a more authentic and traditional side of Buenos Aires, while still having access to a variety of entertainment and dining options. There is fantastic transportation in this neighborhood.
Click here to read a detailed Caballito & Almagro neighborhood guide.
Discovering Buenos Aires Best Neighborhoods
Buenos Aires is such a fantastic city, with so much to find in each neighborhood. I hope you’ll give yourself some time to wander and get to know the uniqueness of each one. You can check out the Ultimate 10-day Buenos Aires Itinerary here.
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