Help us decide - B. Aires or Rio?

Nov 11th, 2003, 06:06 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 95
Help us decide - B. Aires or Rio?

So many places, so little time! I've just started researching for a March 2004 trip and am debating between these two cities. I'd love to hear from you if you've been to either.

A little about us...
Mid-thirties couple, moderately active, experienced travelers. We're looking for good food, some nightlife, new experiences, and a place that's not too expensive and not too cold. We usually stay at budget to moderately priced hotels. Both of these cities are supposed to be relatively inexpensive right now (true?). We're not really going for the beach (we're in Miami) and language won't be a problem (i'm half Hispanic, half Portuguese). I'm also thinking of adding a side trip to Iguazu Falls from either country.

So what do you think? Should we go to Rio or Buenos Aires? Thanks!
BarbBC3 is offline  
Nov 12th, 2003, 12:14 PM
Join Date: May 2003
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Both are lovely cities.However if you live in Miami I would go for Buenos Aires, more of city-city versus a beach-city. There are tons of things to do. Wheather in March should be very nice, the end of Summer.
Also I do not the prevailing exchange rate regarding the Brazilian currency but I know that it is very favorable regarding Argentina. Also no visa requirement , that is no expense is needed to go to Argentina while there is a visa requirement to go to Brazil costing between 75 and 100 dollars p/person.
Graziella5b is offline  
Nov 13th, 2003, 04:35 AM
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I visited Rio for a week last November and B.A. for a 3-day weekend at the end of December.

Both places are relatively inexpensive because the exchange rates with the US$ are good (not as good as the end of 2002, but still quite favorable).

Prices might be a bit higher in Rio than in B.A., but that is because Rio is a bigger tourist destination and you are a tourist. Both cities have safety concerns, but Rio understands that tourism is big for them and they definitely have the police presence there for the reassurance of the tourists. The same might be said about spots in B.A., but it is more obvious in Rio.

I would agree that B.A. is lovely, but the scenery in Rio de Janeiro is world class gorgeous. They make movies about Rio. Surely, you've heard/read/saw something about Ipanema and Copacabana. The Girl from Ipanema. Probably, you have heard of Sugarloaf Mountain (Pao de Azucar in Portuguese) and the Christ the Redeemer statue on the Corcovado.

If you want to see the view from the Corcovado in Rio (and you do), then you will have to pay the $100 US for the Brazil visa (if you have a US passport). (and you do want to see the view: after all it is good enough for the Cristo Redentor).

The visa is good for 5 years and guarantees that you can visit the Brazil side of Iguazu Falls without any immigration problem.

I think that you should look into visiting both, though. See if the mercosur airpass would work for you. Maybe an open jaw: MIA->GIG and EZE-> MIA.
mrwunrfl is online now  
Nov 13th, 2003, 01:39 PM
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I visited both cities in September 03 and loved them. I would definitely go back to Rio if I had one choice. The scenery is beautiful and the people are very hospitable. Night life is Rio is top notch. I would stay in Ipanema. The city is relatively inexpensive if comparing to South Beach. Everything to do in Rio is outdoors, hiking, beach, paragliding, etc. Definitely do not miss Iguazu, I was there also and it is out of this world.
PONCHOTJ is offline  
Nov 13th, 2003, 01:53 PM
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So far it is 2 for Rio and 1 for BA, Im going to make it 3 for Rio and 1 for BA. Rio has it all just like the above posters have said, great restaurants, great night life, a fun beach culture, great place to just sit in a cafe on the orla and watch the world and tongas go by. I have done a fair amount of travelling in my life and I always go back to Rio, it just makes me feel good. Also as the above poster stated it is much more reasonable than South Beach, In S. beach a couple of years ago I had a drink in the lobby of the Lowes hotel with tip $12. In Rio sitting at a cafe drinking caipirinhas if you had 12 dollars worth you would be out for the count. Good food is not very expensive either maybe 10 - 15 dollars a person in a very nice restaurant. I used to live in Miami years ago and I went to Rio then. One thing doesn't have anything to do with another.
Dondiega is offline  
Nov 13th, 2003, 08:03 PM
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Well it sounds like Rio is winning over BA! Thanks everyone for your responses. I have to admit i've always wanted to go to Rio, but I've been reading about BA lately and thought it sounded like a great city to visit too. I'm gonna keep my eye on package rates and see what's out there for Rio. One thing- I've heard airfare from BA to Iguazu Falls is about $200+. Is it similar from Rio?
BarbBC3 is offline  
Nov 14th, 2003, 05:27 AM
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I think that you can get to Iguasu for about the same fare. There is some info about the Mercosur Air Pass at the link listed below. I did a mileage check and found that travelling Rio-Iguassu, Iguazu-B.A., B.A. to Rio was about 1400 miles, well within the mileage range of the lowest priced pass: $225.

You might not know, but there are two airports for each of those destinations and for the likely connecting city, Sao Paolo.

Rio has an international airport (GIG) outside of town and a deomestic one in town. Using RIO in fare searches will search using both airports.

Buenos Aires has the same setup, EZE beign the int'l airport. Fare search using BUE.

Sao Paulo has GRU international outside of city and CGH domestic in town.

The falls has two maybe three airports:
In Brazil, it is IGU (Iguassu, Foz de Iguassu). In Argentina, it is IGR (Iguazu).

You can also get to the falls by bus from Ascuncion, Paraguay.

Last December, I was in Sao Paulo and had a choice between going to the falls or going to Buenos Aires at about the same price. I chose B.A.
mrwunrfl is online now  
Nov 14th, 2003, 05:28 AM
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and to get both Sao Paulo airports use SAO.
mrwunrfl is online now  
Nov 15th, 2003, 05:46 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
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I'm from Rio but plenty of my relatives r from Argentina. I've been to Bs As many times and I just love the city. But definitely Rio is THE place to visit. If u want more info about both cities u can send me a message ([email protected]), it will be a pleasure to help.
Cadu is offline  
Nov 15th, 2003, 05:22 PM
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Thanks mrwunrfl... i think. A lot of information there, which is good, but since I didn't realize i could do Rio, Iguazu & BA on the Mercosur Pass, i'm thinking i should expand my trip. My husband wouldn't thank you for giving me new ideas
BarbBC3 is offline  
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