While the Northern Hemisphere turns up the central heating and gears up for a white Christmas, Buenos Aires is experiencing its annual heat wave, with sweltering temperatures sending many porteños (city dwellers) to the cooler climes of Argentina‘s coast.
With so many leaving the city during the lengthy summer holidays, many bars, clubs and restaurants close between December and February, but while the temperatures soar ever higher, those who can handle the heat will be rewarded with fewer crowds and a pace of life even more laid back than usual. Enjoy the quiet by watching the sunset over the striking Recoleta cemetery, home to Evita’s famous gravestone; explore the clothes boutiques and quirky cafés in Palermo’s Plaza Serrano or wander down to La Boca to snap the photos of El Caminito’s colorfully painted houses.
This is the perfect time of year to hire a bike and discover the city’s green spaces, too –the wildlife reserve of Reserva Ecologica Costanera Sur; the Bosques de Palermo (Palermo woods), with its celebrated its Japanese Gardens; and the Plaza de las Naciones Unidas (United Nations Square), home to the iconic steel flower sculpture that opens and closes at dusk and dawn, are all havens of tranquility where locals congregate during the balmy afternoons. Look out for public events held in the parks, too – outdoor movie showings, open-air milongas (tango dances), circus performances and music concerts are organized throughout the summer.
When the heat becomes insufferable, head out of town instead – day trips to the closest seaside resort of Mar del Plata and the market town of Tigre, set on the idyllic Delta river, are both popular choices. Alternatively, hop on a ferry and explore the Uruguayan towns of Colonia del Sacramento, Montevideo or Punta del Este, where the coastal breeze will keep you cool.