Lewis the Lion sails into Buenos Aires, Argentina

A traditional sign in Buenos Aires

Across the Rio de la Plata from Colonia Del Sacrimento in Uruguay lay Argentina’s capital city, Buenos Aires and Lewis the Lion was very excited the morning he prepared to sail there as he’d heard so many wonderful stories about the place. He arrived at the port and it was just like taking a flight at an airport. You needed to check-in your luggage and go through passport control before boarding the big ferry. The journey, which took an hour and a half, seemed to fly by as Lewis the Lion was enchanted by a DVD of a very famous Argentine cartoon character, Mafalda. Here’s a picture of Mafalda from a comic book:

Mafalda - a famous Argentine cartoon

And here you can click on a link to see a clip from the Mafalda cartoon.

Have you got a favourite British cartoon? What is it and why do you like it?

Before long, Lewis the Lion could see the city of Buenos Aires coming closer and closer into view as the ferry docked in the port: Puerto Madero.

Arriving by ferry in Buenos Aires

Lewis visiting Puerto Madero

Here is a photo of what he saw as he crossed into Argentina: flags demarking the countries of Uruguay and Argentina.

The border at the ferry port between Argentina and Uruguay

In fact the port has played a very important part in the history of Buenos Aires, so much so that its inhabitants are called Porteños.

As Lewis then caught a minibus that would take him and his friends to their hotel, he was filled with an air of excitement that gave him butterflies in his stomach. It was if his instinct was telling him he was about to have a good time in this city; and he wasn’t to be disappointed! As they drove along, he could see grand buildings, that had a distinctive European feel; French to be precise and he could understand why sometimes Buenos Aires was dubbed ‘the Paris of South America.’ Many of the buildings are Baroque in style, tall with balconies, which run along wide, tree-lined avenues.

Lewis overlooking the Avenida de Mayo

A typical grand building in Buenos Aires

French looking building on the Avenida de Mayo

Furthermore, a bit like Paris, Buenos Aires is easy to orientate yourself around, thanks to the way the city is laid out on a grid system and it even has its own metro line: the subte. Here is a photo of Lewis the Lion at the metro station and then riding on one of the famous A metro line in Buenos Aires.

Lewis in the metro station

Lewis rides the metro's A-Line

Lewis thought that it was thoroughly charming with it’s wooden interior and carriage lights. He couldn’t believe that it was still functioning as it looked like these metro cars belonged in a museum: they even had manual doors you needed to pull apart when boarding or alighting from it!

Lewis also discovered that Buenos Aires is famous for its distinctive neighbourhoods such as La Boca, San Telmo and Palermo. However, he will tell you more about these in his next blogs!

As soon as he’d dropped his luggage, Lewis the Lion was eager to get out and explore this capital city. He was close by to the famous shopping street, Calle Florida which was pedestrianised.

The busy Calle Florida

He loved observing the world go by, such as seeing the shoe shiners and the various craft stalls.

A shoe-shiner on Calle Florida - Florida Street

However, he had to be careful of water dripping unexpectedly on him: no doubt from the shops air-conditioning systems!

Lewis the Lion discovered that Buenos Aires is a real cultural hub and is world-famous for a special dance called the tango, as well as for other sports such as football and polo. He will explain more about these intriguing things in his next few blogs.

Lewis spots a tango sign

That evening though, Lewis the Lion got a real taste of what Buenos Aires had to offer: he was off to see a tango show and he laughed his hearty laugh as Helen was sung to by a tango singer and was even dragged up to dance tango in the show itself with a professional tango dancer! What an introduction to life in Buenos Aires!

Have you ever been really excited about travelling to a particular place? Where was it? Why were you so excited? Did you expectations match the reality?

About Helen Molloy

Helen Molloy has been a Primary Learning and Teaching Consultant, leading on the introduction of Primary Languages in the City of Stoke-on-Trent for the past 5 and a half years. She is passionate about language learning and inspiring children into developing a curiosity and awareness of other people's languages and cultures.
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