Dance, Theater, and Music

Teatro Colón

“The best acoustics in the world.”—Alicia de Arteaga, arts editor, La Nación newspaper. Gorgeous building houses one of the premier opera houses in South America and the world. Cerrito 618; tel. 54 11 4378 7344. www.teatrocolon.org.ar

Teatro San Martin

“They have a standing in-house orchestra and troupe and a wide program offering.”—Alicia de Arteaga. The city’s grand public theater and cinema complex features a variety of local and international productions, from classic ballets and children’s plays, to modern dramas and art house films. Avenida Corrientes 1530; tel. 54 11 4371 0111. www.teatrosanmartin.com.ar

Club Atlético Fernandez Fierro

“A pioneer in the rebirth of the traditional tango orchestra.”—Karina Beorlegui, local tango singer. Features a milonga (tango event typically including lessons and demonstrations) with its own in-house live band on Wednesdays and tango classes. Sanchez de Bustamante 764. www.fernandezfierro.com

Teatros de Revista

“A theater-style genre that is very Argentine. It’s music hall from Paris, a little Broadway, mixed with a local sense of humor, dirty jokes, a little nudity.”—Alicia Arteaga. The Teatro Maipo (Esmeralda 449; tel. 54 11 4394 5521; www.maipo.com.ar) is among the many theaters that feature these popular productions. You can’t miss the brightly lit marquees along Corrientes Avenue with scantily clad women, old men in tuxedos, and clownish characters.

Peñas Criollas

Transplants from the provinces of Argentina celebrate their traditions and music styles—such as baguala, huayco, chacarera—in gatherings called peñas in halls, restaurants, and bars throughout Abasto, San Telmo, and Palermo. A partial listing of peñas can be found at www.bue.gov.ar/actividades/?menu_id=90&info=penas

Nightlife

Mundo Bizarro Cocktail Lounge & Grill

“A real eclectic crowd gathers here, you never know who or what you’re going to see.”— Brian Byrnes, co-author, Fodor’s Buenos Aires. Lounge fantastic, cool music, and suave bartenders, who make tasty drinks. Serrano 1222; tel. 54 11 4773 1967. www.mundobizarrobar.com

Niceto Club

“Fridays are based in pop and ‘independent’ rock, with Argentine and independent rock bands.”—Diego Lerer, entertainment critic and editor, Clarín newspaper. Other nights, DJs spin. Niceto Vega 5510; tel. 54 11 4779 9396. www.nicetoclub.com

Clásica y Moderna

“Always has great singers.”—Alicia de Arteaga, arts editor, La Nación. Lovely bookstore, restaurant, and bar in Barrio Norte; quality, laid-back live music, including tango, fado, and jazz. Avenida Callao 892; tel. 54 11 4812 8707. www.clasicaymoderna.com

Cañitas neighborhood

Late into the morning hours, crowds of sexy porteños (Buenos Aires residents) lounge at outdoor tables and spill onto the sidewalks outside the endless trendy restaurants and bars that populate this Palermo enclave near the Hipodromo, the horseracing track.

Pacha

“Argentine version of one of the most popular dance clubs in Europe.”—Diego Lerer. Pretty people and electronic music (techno, house, trance). Remember, most nightclubs don’t get started until around 2 a.m. or later. Avenida Costanera Norte and Pampa; tel. 54 11 4788 4280. www.pachabuenosaires.com

Festivals

Exposition La Rural

July and August. Argentina’s yearly agriculture expo—a state fair on steroids, with producers and vendors showing off their prized cows and bulls, horses and sheep, fruits, vegetables, and other wares. Check out the gaucho (cowboy) shows. www.exposicionrural.com.ar

Feria del Libro

Three weeks in April and May. One of the largest book fairs in the Spanish-speaking world. Argentine and international publishers, speakers, and exhibitions and events for adults and children. www.el-libro.org.ar

Buenos Aires International Independent Film Festival

April. Two-week festival attracts dozens and dozens of movies from around the world. www.bafici.gov.ar

Tango Festival

August. A government-sponsored celebration of tango, featuring concerts, classes, expo of tango-related products, exhibits, and other events. www.festivaldetango.gov.ar

Day of San Cayetano

August 7. About a million Argentines wait for hours to pay tribute to the patron saint of bread and the worker at the Parroquia of San Cayetano on the anniversary of his death. Cuzco 150, in Liniers. www.sancayetano.org.ar

Independence Day

July 9. Many cafés serve the traditional churros con chocolate (tube-shaped fried donuts filled with chocolate) and everyone takes off work in celebration of Argentina’s independence from Spain. The government also stages a solemn tribute in the Plaza de Mayo.

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