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For this Argentina Travel Packing List learn what to wear in Buenos Aires from two locals that have stylish travel fashion tips for you!
Katy Schlegel lived in Buenos Aires for 6 months and has recently returned from a 2 month stay visiting friends and family, she states ‘I am always amazed at what I learn on my travels. Travel forces me to be self-reflective and aware of who I am and who others are; to look outside myself. It also reminds me that we are truly never alone; traveling breaks down life to the basic needs and lays them in a path to simply follow. Check out her awesome blog and social media page.
Ana M Segulin is a born and raised Argentinian, her parents are Italian meaning she has visited Italy and Europe many times, her travels also include Sydney, Australia, where she studied and worked for 5 months, Ana has been living in the USA for the past 12 years.
Thanks for your helpful insight guys!
Argentina Travel Packing List
Written by: Chantelle Mallin
What to Wear in Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires is a city that loves fashion which certainly shines through in the local style. The Porteños – as the natives of Buenos Aires are called – dress is a mix of formal and casual, they are always dressed in the latest styles. Argentinian’s look for quality in clothing and dress is generally classy; you will not see much skin on show, even in the warmer months.
Argentinians dress similarly to Europeans, Buenos Aires is a cosmopolitan city and certainly a place where you can have fun with fashion. Try to dress as fashionably conscious as you can and don’t hold back. The locals tend not to dress in very bright colors, unless it is a hue on trend. They buy clothes to last so usually clothing consists of classic colors that will not go out of style, think blue, black, white etc.
Be warned, you will definitely stand out in typical travel wear. Stay away from shorts if you want to avoid being pegged as a typical tourist, they are generally saved for beach wear. Heels are another item our advisers suggest avoiding – many streets are made with cobblestones or large tiles, you can never be sure these are secure, and can very easily twist an ankle!
Jeans, jeans jeans! Argentinians wear jeans all year long, they are a great versatile piece that you can dress up or down.
The sidewalks in Buenos Aires can be very uneven, so make sure you pack a pair of comfortable shoes for when you walking around and exploring, opt for comfortable cute flats, Buenos Aires is a huge city and you will want to walk to see and take in everything it has to offer.
Buenos Aires is a great place for showcasing your beautiful accessories, think statement jewelry and your favorite sunnies. The women love wearing scarves and pashminas to adorn their outfits so make sure you pack favorite, or treat yourself to a beautiful one while you’re there – they’re also great for having in your bag for when if the weather takes a chilly turn.
An umbrella is essential as the weather can change from day to day and you never know when a torrential downpour is on its way. In the summer months, be sure to pack sunscreen with a high SPF and a wide brimmed hat, the sun is more intense in the southern hemisphere and if you are fair skinned, you will get burned.
Those who rely on electrical appliances should note that the voltage in Argentina is different from the US and things such as hair dryers may blow out. Buenos Aires uses 220 Volts, so it’s probably a good idea to invest in a voltage converter just in case.
A cross body purse is recommended, so you can take all the things you need for the day, as with any large city I would keep it to the front of you, as pick pocketing can happen from time to time, especially on the subway. Check Out Travel Fashion Girl’s tips on Money Belts and the Best Anti-theft Travel Accessories to help keep your valuables safe.
Buenos Aires Shopping
Argentina’s well-loved and mostly traveled city, Buenos Aires is a perfect business and luxury holiday option with a cosmopolitan flourish and alluring landscape. It’s a destination mixed with European glamour, picturesque panoramas and curious downtrodden areas for those who wants something different.
If you’ve forgotten an item or just fancy updating your holiday wardrobe Buenos Aires has got it covered, check out the cool selection of fashion stores, designer boutiques, galleries and specialized shops.
There are three main streets our Buenos Aires experts would totally recommend –
Highly recommend and worth a visit is Avenida Cabildo in Belgrano, this is Katy’s favorite street! They have great little shops all along the avenue with great deals on clothing and shoes! Be sure to go in the little hidden galerías off the avenue, these hidden gems stem off the main street and have a ton of little shops, I mean like the size of a walk-in closet, but you can find the best deals!
If you like window shopping, the other great street would be Avenida Santa Fe, this is a little more expensive, but really fun to walk along to see all the shops and latest fashions.
Here are a few more:
Visit Ricoleta, a posh district with delightfully wide boulevards lined up with different shopping houses. It is also the best place to find spots for fine dining; balconies inspired from French doors with spacious entryways adds to its attraction.
It’s also a great place to visit for artisan fair; it has amazing handmade jewelry and local craft and is located in Plaza Francia, usually on Saturdays or Sundays. Grab some helado (ice cream) from Freddo (across the way from the Recoleta Cemetery)—dulce de leche granizado comes highly recommended!—walk around and enjoy all the beautiful handmade crafts.
La Boca is the home to Buenos Aires’ old port, welcoming each visitor with a rainbow scenery formed by brightly colored buildings. This spot offers exclusive shops that presents unique vintage items for the shopping enthusiasts.
San Telmo on the other hand, exudes a barrio-like feel that brings music to life with its tango orchestras, solitary singers and clowns. You can stop by the antique avenue for priceless goods and exquisite gourmet.
Palermo Soho is the district known for its lively crowd of stylish youths, lined up with malls and stores for the indulgent buyer.Buenos Aires also offers trendy, fashionable places for the modern girl in the district of Palermo. Palermo Hollywood is the perfect place for a vibrant nightlife, and Palermo Chico is the most upmarket part of the district, with its name literally translating to “exclusive.”
Alto Palermo Shopping is the main shopping mall in Buenos Aires; it is located off of Avenida Santa Fe, if you are more the mall type, the street shopping is where you’ll find all the unique shops and styles though.
For outlet stores and last season’s clothes, Avenida Córdoba in Palermo is recommended; this is where you will find all the deals.
Be warned – you may need to pack a collapsible duffle to fly back all you unique and one of a kind souvenirs!
Remember the seasons are opposite to that of the northern hemisphere—spring is September-November, summer is December-February, autumn is March-May, and winter is June-August.
Argentina is a vast country with many different climate zones, be sure to check the regions weather forecast before you travel:
Towards the south in the Patagonia region, it has four very distinct seasons, in the winter the weather can be extremely cold, especially near the southern tip of Argentina in Tierra del Fuego – where the glaciers can be explored.
In the mid-west toward Las Pampas—also known as Gaucho (Argentinian cowboy) territory, the plans are typical to the four seasons. West toward Chile, the seasons also range in the typical four season fashion and if you like winter sports, Bariloche is the place to go.
Headed slightly up north but still to the west, at the foothills of the Andes mountains, is Mendoza—wine country. The weather is moderately warm during the day and drops quite cold during the night; this is a key factor in the making of their famous Argentinian Malbec wine.
Up north towards the top of Argentina, is dry country. In Salta and Jujuy you will find a dry heat during the day with the temperature dropping to moderately cold at night, this region has dry winters and warm/hot summers, with really only two seasons—warm and cold.
Slightly northeast between Paraguay and Brazil is the Misiones Province, near the Iguazú Falls, this region is hot and humid year round.
In the country’s capital city, Buenos Aires, the weather is similar to a four season’s climate without the snow—it is sprinkled with rain that seems to occur every three to four days no matter the time of year.
What to Wear in Buenos Aires in Spring
Katy Says: Spring is crisp and fresh, nice weather during the day, but can get cold at night.
Buenos Aires Packing List
Spring in Buenos Aires runs from September to November, along with autumn, it is considered one of the most favorable times to visit the city as the weather is fresh and pleasant.
To enjoy your trip to the fullest pack accordingly, opt for t-shirt and ¾ sleeved blouses in neutral colors to easily mix and match, a pair of your favorite jeans or cropped trousers and a variation of maxi and skater skirts – great pieces to dress up or down. A great piece of advice would be to think LAYERS – this way you can add or remove garments depending on the weather conditions.
During spring the jacaranda trees display striking purple blossom, creating a very pretty effect, the season is a great time to explore the city on foot, taking in places such as Plaza San Martin and the sunny parks of Palermo Barrio, make sure to pack a comfortable pair of cute ballerina flats or ankle flats to endure the walking. As the end of spring arrives and the weather changes from spring to summer you will see more and more people wearing sandals during the day.
The nights are cooler in spring, so make sure to pack a fun lightweight jacket, a sweater or cardigan and a shawl to layer up in case the temperature drops chilly.
Worth a note: The city’s biggest tango festival takes place mid-august, the nine-day extravaganza of concerts, shows, free classes and exhibitions is a great time to dress up and enjoy the tango-related festivities.
What to Wear in Buenos Aires in Summer
Katy Says: Summer is hot and humid, so expect to sweat a little when you step outside. Always be prepared for a sudden thunder and lightning storm, they happen frequently in the afternoons.
Buenos Aires Packing List
The summer months in Buenos Aires last from December to February, this time of year can feel overbearingly hot and humid at times due to the lack of breeze. To relieve the warm many Porteños, or locals, escape to the nearby beaches of Mar del Plata or Punta Del Este, meaning the city is generally far less crowded.
Clothing for summer needs to be lightweight and breathable, stick to fabrics such as cotton, rayon and linen that absorb perspiration and allow your body heat to escape. Pack a selection of lightweight tank top, t’s and tunic in light colors to pair with linen or harem pants.
Shorts are no very popular and you will hardly see anyone wearing them in the city. Opt for a variety of pretty printed summer dresses and skirts, but make sure not to wear them too short, people still dress very classy, even in the summer months.
The favorable shoes in summer are sandals and flats; you will not really find anyone wearing flip flops – sandals are more fashionable, accessorize your outfits with your favorite sunnies, a wide brimmed hat and plenty of sunscreen!
What to Wear in Buenos Aires in Autumn
Katy Says: Autumn is when it starts to get colder and more days are cloudy and rainy. Expect it to rain every three or four days. The weather seems to really stick to a cycle—sunny one day, cloudy the next, and rainy on the third.
Buenos Aires Packing List
The autumn season runs from March to May, the weather starts to drop cool and rain can be quite frequent so be sure to pack a strong, portable umbrella. The fall is the start of the new Argentine soccer season, if you have the time, check out a fútbol (soccer) game, either La Boca, River Plate, or a country fútbol game – if you want to experience the pride Argentinians have for their country; this is the place to do it!
For Buenos Aires in autumn pack similarly to spring, opt for your favorite jeans, a pair of classic leggings, a mix of short to ¾ sleeves t-shirts, a cute sweater and a light jacket for warmth – layers start to come into play as it can be warm midday and really chilly during the morning and late afternoon/evenings.
Shoe-wise, think comfortable ankle boots or knee highs, people also love to wear the latest trend in athletic shoes, accessorize your fall garments with a stylish oversize scarf and felt fedora hat.
What to Wear in Buenos Aires in Winter
Katy Says: Winter is cold, cloudy and rainy, but every once and awhile there’s a sunny day. It is much like autumn, but it can get extremely cold and wet.
Buenos Aires Packing List
Winter in Buenos Aires lasts from June to August; it can get quite chilly so come prepared, pack a coat and maybe a hat and gloves to protect you from the elements, or plan on buying one of Argentina’s famous leather coats on arrival.
It can get really cold during the winter, so clothing is warm – layering is a must! Clothing wise opt for thick leggings, classic jeans, long sleeve shirts/tunics/t’s and a sweater and jackets to layer.
Accessorize with cute winter favorites such as a pair of leather gloves and a printed scarf – scarves are very fashionable during the winter months; they keep you warm while adding a little layer of pop fashion to your winter clothes.
Choose ankle or knee high boots to adorn your feet and keep you snug, make sure they can withstand water, it is not fun walking around with wet/cold feet all day!
Buenos Aires Travel Tips
Known as the ‘Paris of South America’, immerse yourself in the Buenos Aires culture and experience all the lively city has to offer. The heart of Buenos Aires lies in the diverse and distinctive barrios (neighborhoods) – from the cool boutiques of Palermo to the colorful sights of La Boca. With its European feel and South American liveliness, you’re sure to fall in love with this city.
Go to San Telmo on a Sunday, you’ll see a lot of the culture of the city, it is very touristy but it has so many cool things to see, i.e. Tango dancing in the streets! Check out a Milonga…watch locals, young and old, dance the Tango till the wee hours of the morning, while sipping on some red wine. It is an incredibly cool experience!
Duck into a Panadería in the late afternoon for a café con leche (coffee with milk) and a medialuna (croissant)…the coffee is amazing and so are their pastries.
People don’t usually start eating dinner till around 8pm or 9pm, hence the snack in the afternoon, make sure you don’t leave Argentina without ordering a steak and drinking some Malbec wine made across the way in Mendoza – the best place to grab a steak in B.A. is by far Club Eros in Palermo, it is a local spot; you will only see Argentinians here.
The exotic Mendoza, is literally overflowing with spirits. Visit this Argentinian town during the Grape Harvest Festival, considered the most important wine celebration in the world. Feast your eyes and ears on the art and musical spectacles that accompany it, with lighting and sound effects as well as a stage filled with actors and dancers. The show ends with the nomination of the new National Harvest Queen, topped off with a firework show.
However, you could still enjoy Mendoza’s hospitality the whole year round. Tourist excursions are widely available in local wineries, and you and your girlfriend can enjoy staying at first class hotels within the district for a luxe South America experience.
Be sure to pack at least one fun outfit for going out at night, dress according to time of year, it is a must in Buenos Aires! Check out Palermo, it has so many bars and clubs, you can always find something going on, plus you can check out the local club fashion while dancing and sipping a cocktail – oh and just FYI the night usually doesn’t start till about midnight or later.
What are your tips on what to pack for Argentina? Comment below!
For more tips on South America packing list, please read:
- What to Pack for Argentina: Outdoor Adventures
- What to Pack for Nicaragua
- What to Wear in Uruguay
- What to Pack for Aruba
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