Every time I go somewhere new in Buenos Aires, I realize more and more how huge the city is (around 3 million people and the 10th largest city in the Americas, to be exact). Although usually the commotion and excitement of Buenos Aires is something that I feel I can’t get enough of, occasionally everyone needs a break. Fortunately, although the city is so dense and populous, one can seek escape in any of the beautiful parks scattered both throughout and around the outskirts of the city proper. Lately, when I need a few hours away from the packed streets and cafes, the insanely crowded busses, and the towering buildings, I have found myself heading to these green oases to relax, people-watch, and feel like I am outside of the city for a bit.
The construction of these parks increased drastically in the beginning of the 20th century after a massive wave of European immigration to Buenos Aires. French architects were typically the ones who promoted and designed “green spaces” that took on many characteristics of French parks (this is all according to my very helpful Latin American Art and Architecture class). Although I don’t necessarily spend my time analyzing architectural components while I’m trying to relax in a park, it is definitely cool to notice the heavy European influences of sculptures, bridges, gardens, and more.
While sometimes it is nice to walk through a park alone, going with friends on sunny days (which are becoming more frequent here as summer finally approaches) has also proven to be one of my favorite things to do. Acouple of days ago, a friend and I decided to go watch the sun set over the water at an ecological reserve; although it isn’t too far outside of the city, it felt a world away from my busy neighborhood. Watching the sun go down over the city skyline and getting a breath of fresh air for the first time all week was a simple yet wonderful feeling. The city of Buenos Aires is undeniably impressive, but there is definitely something special about its’ green spaces.