We loved getting resources and ideas from friends we met on the road. Now that we're home, people keep asking what we recommed. So if you're going to some place on our route, please don't hesitate to ask us where to stay and what not to miss.
Bay of Islands, New Zealand
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Language school in BA
1) We rented a studio apt. we found on craigslist.
2) We had one night here and LOVED it! Yira Yira
Things not to miss in BA:
1) Recoleta Cemetery at dusk when the sun is setting
2) Museo Evita if you are interested in her story
3) Sunday market in San Telmo
4) Steak and red wine, anywhere :)
5) Empanadas from street vendors
6) A tango show (I can get info on this..)
7) English tour of the Casa Rosada (only Fridays, I think)
Day trips from BA:
1) Uruguay - Colonia
A few other thoughts:
1) The buses in all of Argentina are the BEST buses we experienced on our whole trip. So if you can do side trips, do it! Splurge on the Super Cama and you have a bed! We did an 18 hour bus ride and we slept and felt great aftwrwards.
2) If you can make it to Bariloche - do it. We ran out time and it is the one thing I regret not doing.
3) Iquazu Falls is worth a visit, if you have the time.
3) South America explorers are very helpful. They have a clubhouse in BA, with parties, get togethers, etc. http://www.saexplorers.org/club/home
4) It is an international city and feels more European than South American. The women and men are always impeccably dressed :) and I wished that I had some cute shoes and one or two nice outfits with me.
We used our South America Lonely Planet, which of course covered Argentina. If I were you, I would get just the latest Argentina book...it goes into SOO much more detail and history.
And for Tango, here are the recommendations from my friend Amy Lincoln, a California girl who fell in love with Buenos Aires...
So, let's see. If you are a beginner I recommend taking classes at La Escuela de Tango Argentino (en la Galeria Pacifico, calle Florida).....especially if you don't speak Spanish. Also La Viruta is great and has a more night club feeling (in Palermo).
Look for the Tango magazine "El Tangauta"....it's filled with lot's of info.
A milonga for beginners could be "La Ideal" (a beautiful historic Cafeteria). They have matinee milongas there but early in the evening you can get away with being on the dance floor as a beginner.
For a funkier, artsy young vibe go to "La Cathedral".....it's a trip.
Another alternative place is "Villa Malcom" (Palermo). It also has a young vibe and you can easily enjoy a beer and an empanada while watching the dancers, without feeling pressure to dance.
In the traditional milongas you'll feel more pressure from the Tangueros....it's better to respect the codes of the culture there. Anyway, you can read up in El Tangauta when you find it!