DECM 128 Urban Cultures: Buenos Aires: Itinerary

INSTRUCTOR: Gustavo Fares [Limit: 10 students]

Buenos Aires is one of the most buzzing and exciting cities in the world. This travel course with provide students with experiential learning through a series of itineraries related to the city’s historical, political, literary, artistic, and musical scenes. The course will emphasize cultural exchange, engagement with the space, and personal transformation. In addition, December is summer weather in Buenos Aires, bringing a welcome respite to our Wisconsin winter. Knowledge of Spanish helpful but not required.

Prerequisite: Consent of instructor.

Program fee: $3,500
The program fee covers transportation to and from airport, all taxis, subways, city buses (when needed), and a private bus (with local guide in English) for all the excursions. All meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks will be covered. The fee will also pay for museum entrances, a tango show, a milonga (tango dancing with live orchestra), and Opera Theatre visit, as well as students’ insurance. The fee will also cover 3 star hotel accommodations in downtown BA, with double occupancy rooms.

In addition to the program fee, students are responsible for the airfare between their home and Buenos Aires (approximately $1,500 in an American carrier, depending on where they fly from), and Lawrence tuition (approximately $1,500).


Monday December 2
Travel to Buenos Aires

Day 1. Tuesday December 3
Arrival and city tour
Students will be picked up at Buenos Aires airport.
We will gather at the Hotel, in historic San Telmo. Introduction to the city: afternoon walking guided tour to some of the most important sites of the downtown areas.

Day 2. Wednesday December 4
Buenos Aires and its two passions: Tango and soccer
A tour guided by feeling. We will explore fútbol (soccer) the sport of the city, and visit the sites of its most important soccer club, Boca Juniors, in La Boca neighborhood. We will also explore the Tango, the music of the city, through a visit to cafés and museums. We will learn the basic steps, and attend to a milonga (tango dancing) to see and be seen among the tango enthusiasts.

Day 3. Thursday December 5
Visual Arts in Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires is famous for its art museums and institutions, and for the vibrant cultural life of its visual manifestations. We will visit the “museum mile”, including the National Museum of Fine Arts, the MALBA (Museo Latinoamericano de Bellas Artes) and the private museum Fundación Fortabat, in the posh Puerto Madero neighborhood. We will also attend a tango show that night.

Day 4. Friday December 6
Visit to the Delta region, north of the city
We will travel to the Delta region, and explore the natural beauty of the region’s geography, flora, and fauna. We will navigate the Parana river, look at the islands and the elegant residencies. We will have lunch at the posh restaurant “María del Luján.” We will also visit the Northern neighborhoods of San Isidro and Olivos. On the way back to the city, by private bus, we will pass the Presidential Residency.

Day 5. Saturday December 7
Buenos Aires and its people: Evita Perón and Jorge Luis Borges
Morning visit to Plaza Francia arts fair. In the afternoon, a guided tour will take us to the most elegant areas of Buenos Aires, such as Recoleta, where Evita is buried, the neighborhoods of Belgrano and Palermo, where Borges lived and wrote about. We will visit the Eva Perón Museum as well as the National Library, where Borges was director.

Day 6. Sunday December 8
Sunday: Old Buenos Aires
A visit to San Telmo’s neighborhood, in old Buenos Aires. We will stroll around the antiquities fair and cafés, with tango dancing and music playing in the streets, and visit the famous San Telmo Market. We will take a historic tour of colonial Buenos Aires at the Sanjón de Granados archeological site, and visit the nearby Museum of Modern Art.

Day 7. Monday December 9
Papal itinerary
We will visit the places important in the formation and activities of Pope Francis. We will sightsee the place where Francis was born in the Flores neighborhood, the Basílica de San José de Flores, where he made the decision to consecrate his life to the Church, the institutions where he studied and worked, and the Metropolitan Cathedral, where he officiated as Archbishop of Buenos Aires. Dinner at San Telmo neighborhood.

Day 8. Tuesday December 10
Theatre (Last Day)
Guided visit to Colon Opera Theatre. Debriefing of experiences over lunch. Free time to acquire materials students will use upon return to work on their papers.
Transport to Ezeiza airport for overnight flight.

Wednesday December 11
Arrive to the United States

Provisional itinerary and sites. Itinerary and prices subject to change.