Microcentro, Buenos Aires Travel Guide
- Most of Buenos Aires' major attractions are within walking distance
- Wonderful shopping, dining and entertainment
- Beautiful eclectic architecture
- Many subway lines in the area
- High density of hotels, with options for every budget
- Historic sites such as the Colon Theater and Café Tortoni
- Pedestrian areas, such as Calle Florida, which is one of the main shopping hubs
- Bustling during the week, but quieter on the weekend
- Crowds everywhere and lots of traffic on the main thoroughfares
- Some parts can feel a bit seedy at night
What It's Like
Microcentro is the heart of Buenos Aires -- both geographically and figuratively. Most visitors find themselves walking around this area time and again during their stay, be it because most major attractions are in the neighborhood or because of the wide array of restaurants and shops it offers.
The area is the main financial and cultural hub of the city, and corporate offices and businesses make it one of the most bustling neighborhoods in the capital. Boutiques, local and chain restaurants, dozens of hotels for every budget, attractions, and entertainment venues attract hordes day and night. There are few apartment buildings here, and Microcentro empties out a bit at night and on the weekends, but there's always something going on in the neighborhood, where bars open till late and jet-lagged tourists wander to sites like the Obelisk, the Plaza de Mayo or the Colon Theater at any time of the day or night.
Chaos, traffic and crowded sidewalks are what define this hopping area, but it's also the best place to feel the city and get a sense of what the country really is like. Scenes of opulence and poverty blend like in few other places, with homeless sitting in front of upscale boutiques, and businessmen in suits standing in line at a take-out eatery along with construction workers.
Where To Stay
Microcentro is a fairly compact neighborhood (compared to the size of Buenos Aires) with a simple grid system, which makes it easy to walk around. A section of Line C of the subway system runs under Avenida 9 de Julio, and three other lines intersect at some point with this major thoroughfare, so staying in this area offers easy access both by car and by subway to other parts of the city.
Calle Florida (Florida Street) is one of the main shopping hubs in Buenos Aires, and it boasts both upscale boutiques and shopping malls --such as Galerias Pacifico -- and local shops selling Argentine leather items. It is also one of the few pedestrian areas in the city, and though it still draws crowds, it is generally quieter.
The area between Avenida 9 de Julio and the Casa Rosada (the Presidential palace) is an attraction-packed part of the neighborhood, also conveniently located close to the hopping waterfront district of Puerto Madero.