The Buenos Aires Chinatown is located in the porteño neighborhood of Belgrano and, although it is only two blocks long, it is an important tourist spot.
This two block area is not officially a neighborhood but it is called Chinatown because its many shops sell a great variety of merchandise and offer many different services and typical oriental gastronomy.
+ BUENOS AIRES CHINATOWN: THE DOOR
As is the case in many world capitals, people enter the Chinatown in Buenos Aires through a great arc or door. The impressive Buenos Aires door was installed in 2009 on the corners of Arribeños and Juramento streets.
The door is eleven meters tall, eight meters wide and contains many symbols of Chinese culture, including guardian dragons at the top. On each side of the great door are beautiful lions. These lions have become the preferred spot for those who desire to make a wish or a promise or just to have their picture taken.
On the left just behind one of the lions is a marble plaque commemorating the gift of the arc from the Chinese community to the Argentine people in gratitude for their generosity and as a symbol of the friendship between the two people.
+ WHAT IS BUENOS AIRES CHINATOWN LIKE?
On weekends the streets are crowded with Argentine and international tourists as well as members of the Chinese community in Argentina. This Chinatown area includes Arribeños between Juramento and Olazábal and Mendoza between Montañeses and the General Bartolomé Mitre railway tracks (just meters from the Belgrano C Station).
In Chinatown you will find:
– Stores selling products made in China: toys, jewelry, clothes, shoes, eyeglasses, purses, Samurai swords, angel bells, decorative objects, porcelain teapots and cups, all inexpensive, some imitations, none in a luxury category. The signs are amusing: “If you break it, you pay for it.”.
– Stores offering customer service such as beauty shops, massage and acupuncture salons.
– Clothing shops, some exclusively for women, offer a great diversity of design outfits.
– Food shops offer typical Chinese meals to be eaten on the street (all sorts of seafood kebabs such as shrimp and different kinds of fish). These meals are inexpensive and very tasty. You have to be willing to try something different!
– Restaurants are abundant and vary in quality and price. They range from the sophisticated and elegant “Chinese Rose” to the oriental fast food place, the Porteño Dragon”. You will also find restaurants specializing in sushi, a type of food that is acquiring more and more fans in our city.
Supermarkets have all sorts of typical products. Asia Oriental is a large one on Mendoza Street and Casa China, on Arribeños Street, offers a large variety of seeds, spices, and condiments unavailable in other locations. People come from all over to find unique products and ingredients such as dried seeds, dried fruit, a large variety of teas (jasmine, red ginseng, green, etc.), tofu, rice noodles, wasabi, soy sauce, seaweed, salt and oil.
+ DAYS AND WHEN TO VISIT BUENOS AIRES CHINATOWN
You can visit Chinatown any day of the week because the commercial businesses are open to the public from Monday to Monday, including holidays from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM (9-21 o’clock).
The restaurants open at noon from Tuesday to Sunday, close in the afternoon and open again at night. Their hours are the usual restaurant hours.
As for holidays, the shops will be open on the day of the holiday, but will close the next day: if the holiday falls on a Monday, most restaurants and supermarkets will be closed on Tuesdays. If the holiday includes both Monday and Tuesday, they will be closed on Wednesday.
+ HOW TO GET TO BUENOS AIRES’ CHINATOWN
Buenos Aires’ Chinatown is located between 6000 Avenida del Libertador, Olazábal at 1600, Arribeños at 2200 and Juramento at 1600. There are various ways to reach Chinatown:
– Bus lines: 15, 29, 42, 44, 60, 63, 64, 65, 80, 107, 113, 114, 118, and 130.
– Trains: Mitre Railway to Belgrano C station.
– Subways (Metro): D Line to Juramento Station, then walk six blocks to Juramento 1600.
+ TIPS | BUENOS AIRES CHINATOWN
– Take your camera with batteries charged and a spare battery.
– Music is great company.
– Wear comfortable shoes
– Use sun screen since overexposure to the sun is not good for your skin.
– Arm yourself with patience because Chinatown is very crowded: its streets, restaurants, supermarkets and businesses are full of people.
– Secure your valuables (purse, backpack, camera, notebook).
– Try some food you can eat on the go.
– Around the middle of May, the Buddha or Versak Bath is celebrated. This traditional festival is very colorful and it’s worth a visit to see it.
+ ACCOMODATION IN BELGRANO
If you’re looking for accommodations in Belgrano neighborhood, close to Chinatown, you can choose from Hostels in Belgrano, Apartments in Belgrano and University Residences.