Buenos Aires for Children

Alejandra Campomar, Founder of http://www.buenosairesparachicos.com

Kelly: I am so excited to speak with you Alejandra. You have made my trip to Buenos Aires amazing with my two children. When I was researching what to do with kids, none of the tour books or guide books had the wealth of information you did.

Alejandra: Thank you for having me here.  “Buenos Aires for Children” is a love that is directed and intended for parents to find cultural and entertainment things for their children here always in Buenos Aires. They’re just curated by me.

Kelly: If someone traveling here and they haven’t been here with their kids, what do you recommend? What are your top recommendations?

Alejandra: I would tell them to choose from a little bit of museums, little bit of parks, and the little bit of cultural centers.

The museum of Sívori has also a very small café, which has a little park, so you can go and have a hotel that you must always pray when you’re in Buenos Aires.

Then visit Palermo. In the Palermo Park, you’re going to have Roseiral, whichis an amazing park that was designed by Carlos Thays. It’s incredible. It has all the glamor of past years.  You must go there.

There’s a merry-go-round. There are restaurants all around there with a variety of things to taste.  That is a very nice place, and it also has a lagoon. Palermo also has a lagoon.

Alejandra: Also in Palermo, you’re going to find a planetarium that it is newly refurbished. It’s very interesting. It has a museum and it has also a small show that you always have to find your tickets online. You have to book your tickets online.

Then when you’re in Palermo, also you can go to the Japanese garden. It is a very small garden. It’s private. There are some days that are free, but it is mostly very accessible. That is also a piece that you can do before going through MALBA Museum. You can interconnect everything.

Try to choose things by areas because Buenos Aires is a very big city. If you try to go on early in the morning to the North of the city and then go to the south of the city during the afternoon, you’re going to waste a lot of time in the commute.  Try to choose things by the days and try to organize that by areas.

Kelly: I have noticed personally there are tons of cultural events that I’ve taken my kids to so many shows that are amazing. Even if they’re in Spanish, they tremendously enjoyed it and wanted to come back.

It’s amazing compared to even in San Francisco, the events and the cultural activities they have available to just even like a three-year-old.

Alejandra: From babies.

Kelly: From babies on. Tell us more about that.

Alejandra: There are activities coming from the public area and from the private area, so there’s a lot to choose from. You’re going to find a lot of variety from very different ranges of ages. You can find theater. You can find art classes, cooking classes. You can find concerts. You can find parks. There are a lot of things to do, so that’s very hard to choose from. It’s also very stimulating for the children.

Kelly: It’s very hard. Every day, I didn’t know what to do because there were so many things to do.

Kelly: What are your top 10 things to do in Buenos Aires for kids?

Alejandra: If you’re coming with babies, I’m surely going to choose the CCK. That was previously the post office, central post office. It’s public, so it’s free, and you can go mostly in weekends. You can go and have music classes. You can go to concerts.

Alejandra: You must go to La Usina. La Usina was an energy fabric and now it is a cultural center. It is very important, and it is in the south of the city. A lot of people say like, “I don’t want to go to the south of the city,” But if you go there, it’s very easy to access, and you will find a lot of concerts every weekend. You’re going to find workshops for children. Sometimes you have festivals.  It’s amazing. The place is beautiful. Just to see that is, I mean, it’s amazing. It’s worth the trip.

Then I think you should really check museums from the National Arts Museum. There are a lot of activities for children. There are visits just directed to them with the puppets.  It is very accessible to them. They’re going to find things in every art piece. You will end the visit with an art class. They put in practice everything they learned walking in the museum.  It’s an amazing experience.

Then you have Proa. Proa has a special suitcase for children that you go inside the museum, and you open the suitcase, and the adventure starts because you’re going to have a booklet with activities to go through everything, the expositions.  It’s very interesting. It was a museum that was mostly for grownups, so it was very hard to go in there with children. Now, it’s completely accessible.

You can also go to the C3. It’s for teenagers, and you can also go with small children, but they’re not going to understand everything. But it’s also worth the trip because it’s free. It’s in Palermo. It’s very easy to go there. It’s an area full of restaurants, so you can complement the visit. You’re going to have a lot of concepts of math, science, and physics. It also has an amazing park with a lot of games to play with and take amazing pictures, so you must go there.

Kelly: If someone traveling here and they haven’t been here with their kids, what do you recommend? What are your top recommendations?

Alejandra:  I would tell them to choose from a little bit of museums, little bit of parks, and the little bit of cultural centers.

The museum of Sívori has also a very small café, which has a little park, so you can go and have a hotel that you must always pray when you’re in Buenos Aires.

Then visit Palermo. In the Palermo Park, you’re going to have Roseiral, whichis an amazing park that was designed by Carlos Thays. It’s incredible. It has all the glamor of past years.  You must go there.

There’s a merry-go-round. There are restaurants all around there with a variety of things to taste.  That is a very nice place, and it also has a lagoon. Palermo also has a lagoon.

Alejandra: Also in Palermo, you’re going to find a planetarium that it is newly refurbished. It’s very interesting. It has a museum and it has also a small show that you always have to find your tickets online. You have to book your tickets online.

Then when you’re in Palermo, also you can go to the Japanese garden. It is a very small garden. It’s private. There are some days that are free, but it is mostly very accessible. That is also a piece that you can do before going through MALBA Museum. You can interconnect everything.

Try to choose things by areas because Buenos Aires is a very big city. If you try to go on early in the morning to the North of the city and then go to the south of the city during the afternoon, you’re going to waste a lot of time in the commute.  Try to choose things by the days and try to organize that by areas.

Kelly:  I’m here in the winter, and obviously, I had a great time because of the winter holiday and there were so many amazing activities that we were able to take advantage of, many of them free. Tell us of the different times of year. Are there better times to visit than others?

Alejandra: During the year, you’re going to find that winter is very crowded because schools are off on their activities. Everything is going to be very packed. I don’t know if that is good or bad. You’re going to have a very big agenda, but places aren’t going to be crowded.

Summer is also a very good time. You’re going to have fewer activities that the climate is very hot.  Sometimes it’s hard to move children around. It’s 30 degrees around.

Kelly: Very, very hot.

Alejandra: It’s very hot climate, so I don’t know if that’s the best time. There are things during the whole year.  The thing that changes is the agenda at every place. There are always festivals. You can find festivals also during the winter or during the summer and in between.  It’s a bit unpredictable, but it’s also great.

You are going to find centers with activities every weekend. The hardest is to find activities during the weekdays. Weekends are always easy. Weekdays are the hardest if you are not from here. Because if you’re from here, most people will put their children into workshops, private workshops and have their own agenda.  It’s hard to come and get into a workshop because spots are really hard to find.

Alejandra:       You’re going to find science workshops. There are art workshops. There are pottery workshops, cooking. Whatever you want to find, you’re going to find it.

Kelly:  They’re afterschool programs?

Alejandra:  After school. People here are very used to go to school and then do workshops.

Kelly: Kids start school at what age?

Alejandra: Here, they go to kindergarten around three years old. Then they go to school until they are 17. The school is sometimes doing half a day and a lot of schools are the whole day from eight o’clock on the morning to five o’clock in the afternoon.  It’s a lot of time. A lot of children, after that, they go and do sports or in workshops in English.

Alejandra: If you were not from here, then I would rather use the weekdays to know all the neighborhoods, to have a coffee, go to the museums, and get to know the place. Then make a very tight agenda for the weekends.

Best thing to go somewhere here is always a first time when it opens. Opening time is the best time to get because people are always getting to places at 3:00 PM or it’s always late.

Kelly: I’ve noticed things here don’t open until one o’clock, which is very opposite from where I’m from.

Alejandra: Mornings, you have nothing to do. Morning and then during the night, you have nothing to do. It’s very hard and places you can go to eat with children.

Kelly: Oh, is that right? When you go to Spain, I see kids out with everybody. Here, I have not seen kids. People don’t go out with their kids.

Alejandra: It’s hard. I did a post about a week ago because I wanted to ask people what their secret was when they wanted to go someplace. That is a very good post. It has a lot of likes and a lot of comments. If you need directions, addresses and tips and I think they are supposed to go to. That has a lot of information

Kelly:  What do people do with their kids here in the morning before everything happens?

Alejandra:  People wake up very late. They have dinner around 9:00 PM or 10:00 PM.  That is what you should expect. People wake up very late. They go to work very late around 9:00 AM or 10:00 AM. The whole schedule, it’s a little bit changed.

Kelly: Later, right?

Alejandra: Yes. The kids in the morning, they usually go to nurseries or they go to school or they stay at home with playing groups.

Kelly: With a local playgroup?

Alejandra: Yes. You can do that. You have play groups in English. You have play groups and in Spanish.

Kelly: How do you find those?

Alejandra: It’s a little bit of a secret. You tell people you know about that and you will contact a teacher that is organizing that. She makes the group. But it’s around six children. They’re in a play group.

Kelly: Is parent involved or you drop the kid off?

Alejandra: You mostly drop off the kids.

Kelly:  What age does that start?

Alejandra: You can have play groups from a year, a year and a half to three years. That is before starting kid kindergarten. Then you have music groups. Those are always in special places. You go to the place and you will participate a music group or an art group.

Kelly: Those have secret things to do something like that?

Alejandra: I mean it’s not really secret, but it is just like word of mouth thing. That’s how you know about that.

Alejandra:  You should also try to visit the libraries. They are not very impressive, but they’re places where you have a lot of variety of books. You can know people that are also interested in the same things that you are interested. That is also the value of the libraries here.

Kelly: I think It’s such an amazing experience to take your kid to another country and give them the different perspective, world perspective and just having your blog as a resource, as a valuable resource for people who are wanting to travel here.

Kelly:  Is there anything different you think that moms do here that maybe they don’t do in the US or someplace else?

Alejandra: think that the language is also something positive. A lot of people speak in English, so you’re going to find that if you don’t have the words in Spanish, a lot of people are going to be able to help you. Another thing is I think that people here are very friendly.  If you go to a park and you sit and you start chatting with another mom, she’s going to tell you a lot about her lifestyle, a lot about the neighborhood, a lot of tips she has. They are very open and you can quickly find where you’re standing.

Alejandra: People here are like brothers and sisters even with people you don’t know. They are very eager to collaborate. If you’re in need of anything, they’re going to help you. People eat a lot in here in the houses. If you get to know someone, it’s very likely they’re going to invite you over and have play dates and houses. It’s very common here. That is something you should know.

Kelly: My kids had a blast. I have had a great time. Where can people go for more information?

Alejandra:    You can go to my website. That is buenosairesparachicos.com or you can go to my Instagram. That one is @buenosairesparachicos also.

Kelly:  It’s a wonderful place to visit. I’m so happy that I had you as the guide for our activities.

Alejandra:  Thank you for visiting us. It is very amazing for us to have people around the world enjoying the same things that we enjoy.

 

 

About Alejandra Campomar

Alejandra lives in Buenos Aires with her husband and three children.She is a lawyer and cultural manager who is passionate about arts, children and Buenos Aires. Through her blog, she shares data, activities and places that she chooses to enjoy with her own children.

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