Buenos Aires is one of the most popular destinations to visit in Latin American. This European-esque city with Latin flavor has plenty to offer from its mix of architectures, local wines, unique dance styles, and fascinating cultural history that’s visibly changing and progressing every year. It certainly stands out from other cities in the region. LGBT rights in Argentina are quite evolved compared to the rest of the continent and Buenos Aires is a leader in Latin American. It was the second country of the Americas to allow same-sex marriage after Canada and was the first in Latin America back in 2010.
They have also lifted the archaic ban on gay men donating blood – a problem still blighting many other developed nations across the world. Furthermore, transgender rights in the country are some of the best worldwide allowing citizens to change their gender identities without common barriers like surgery or therapies. The comprehensive transgender rights are also some of the world’s most progressive, permitting individuals to change their gender without going through hormone therapy or medical treatments.
Despite the fact that gay sex has been legal in Argentina for over a hundred years, that doesn’t mean that liberal attitudes have always prevailed. Carlos Jáuregui was the countries most prominent LGBT campaigner and lead the first Gay Pride parade in 1992. He is well known for his manipulation of the media to raise the profile of the gay struggle and is considered an icon among gay Argentinians. He died of AIDS in 1996 aged just 38. The state recently renamed a metro station after the prominent LGBT activist and campaigner Carlos Jáuregui.
Table of Contents
1. General Tips
2. Transportation & Airport Transfer
3. Gay Hotels in Buenos Aires
4. Sightseeing & Activities in Buenos Aires
5. Gay Tours in Buenos Aires
6. Restaurants and Cafes in Buenos Aires
7. Buenos Aires Gay Bars
8. Buenos Aires Gay Clubs and Parties
9. Buenos Aires Gay Saunas & Cruising Bars
10. Gay Events in Buenos Aires
11. Day Trips from Buenos Aires
Buenos Aries is a huge, cosmopolitan city compromising stunning 19th-century buildings, world-class museums and plenty of gay bars to keep you busy in the evenings. The city has rich cultural heritage too. Highlights of the arts scene including the modern art museum known as MALBA and, of course, Casa Rosada, also known as the Pink House, famed for the balcony where Evita addressed the people of Argentina.
Once you’ve spent the morning sightseeing at the fantastic art galleries you can spend the afternoon indulging in some Dulce de leche. Dulce de leche is the taste of Argentina, this deliciously sweet caramel can be found in everything from coffee to cake and is the perfect afternoon snack to refuel.
From April to June, which is fall in Buenos Aires, and from September to December, which is spring, are the best months to visit. The temperatures are mild, and the crowds are smaller, plus accommodation prices are more affordable. It’s advisable to avoid going in January and February (because it’s the peak summer tourist time) and also avoid June to August if you don’t enjoy the rain and cooler temperatures.
To experience some of the gorgeous architectural history and decor of the city, stop by El Ateneo Grand Splendid, a former theater that was converted into a remarkable bookstore, to explore and appreciate the beauty.
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Transportation & Airport Transfer
The city center is about 30 kilometers from the airport in Buenos Aires. There are three main options for travelers arriving to EZE airport who need to get to their destination. First, a private or shared airport transfer can be booked online in advance or upon arrival in Buenos Aires. Aerobus Ezeiza, Tienda Leon, Mini Bus Ezeiza are some popular options. Second, you can take a 40-minute taxi ride for about 700-900 pesos ($10 – $13 USD) depending on where you’re going exactly. Lastly, public buses can also get you easily to your destination but will take anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour and a half. Take line 8 to Plaza de Mayo or Congress, line 394 to Monte Grande Railroad Station & Camino de Cintura, or line 51 to Constitucion. You’ll need to buy SUBE pass for about 25 pesos and load it to take the bus.
Gay Hotels in Buenos Aires
Algodon Mansion – a gay-friendly hotel located in the upscale Recoleta neighborhood, Algodon Mansion is a restored French classical mansion with ten beautiful suites. Guests can enjoy the sauna room or take advantage of the rooftop swimming pool and outdoor terrace. Around the hotel, you’ll also find boutiques, art galleries, restaurants, and cafés.
Faena Hotel – offers 90 classic styled rooms with modern splashes in Puerto Madero, a new vibrant neighborhood in the city. Hotel amenities include a fine dining restaurant, gym, spa, and an outdoor pool. The gay-friendly hotel has also hosted various LGBT weddings as it's a beautiful and welcoming place to celebrate.
Loi Suites Recoleta – stay in the upscale neighborhood of Recoleta. This gay-friendly hotel has studios and two-room suites designed with a minimalistic look. Around it, you’ll find art galleries, restaurants, as well as the nightlife and many attractions of the city. Guests of the property can also enjoy an in-house restaurant, a heated swimming pool, and a beautiful Winter Garden.
Lugar Gay – a men-only, gay bed & breakfast in the neighborhood of San Telmo, a bohemian neighborhood in the city. It features a relaxing hot tub, cozy lounge area, small gym, shared kitchen facilities, and a library. Pop up to the sun terrace for wonderful views of the Buenos Aires skyline. Of course, breakfast is included. Nearby sights include Plaza de Mayo Square, Puerto Madero Waterfront, and Recoleta Cemetery.
Be Trimos – a former Axel Hotel, Be Trimos is a gay hotel located in trendy San Telmo. Its accommodations feature 48 contemporary rooms, a rooftop pool and lounge area with an outdoor shower, and a relaxing spa.
Mio Hotel – a gay-friendly boutique hotel situated in the Recoleta neighborhood with Plaza Francia, Recoleta Mall, El Ateneo Grand Splendid, and Teatro Colon all within walking distance. The hotel itself offers an indoor pool, fitness center, library lounge, and onsite restaurant.
Art Factory – an old mansion turned funky gay-friendly hostel in San Telmo with shared and private rooms. It offers Tango and Spanish lessons, cultural activities, and a large roof-deck. It’s located close to many attractions like Plaza de Mayo, the San Telmo Fair, and the Puerto Madero neighborhood.
Pop Hotel – an affordable gay-friendly boutique hotel offering 44 spacious rooms in the Villa Crespo neighborhood at the southern end of Palermo Soho. Nearby you’ll find shops, cafés, and restaurants. Most of the nightlife is a 15 to 20-minute walk away.
There are even a few LGBT-oriented booking sites like misterb&b where you can rent a room from a local gay host. Founded in 2014, misterb&b is not a hotel or chain, but rather a booking site for rooms, apartments and homes. Similar to AirBnB, Vrbo and Booking.com, misterb&b is an online service, but it allows you to from gay and gay-friendly hosts around the world. They have hosts in more than 200 countries and territories with more than 1 million total listings. Understanding the gay scene is much more easily done with the help of a local and apartment sharing is one of the best ways to meet someone living in the city who knows how things work, where and when are the best nights to go out, and what places to eat at and which to avoid.Special Offer! Sign up with misterb&b and you will receive a free $10 credit to use on your first booking!
Sightseeing & Activities in Buenos Aires
Cementerio de la Recoleta (Recoleta Cemetery) – an elaborate, beautiful, and out of the ordinary cemetery where the infamous Eva (Evita) Perón, former First Lady of Argentina, is buried. You will almost always find a crowd of tourists around her mausoleum snapping pictures. Also explore the other really over-the-top gaudy ones that populate the cemetery. Book tour →
Free 3-hour walking tour – learn about Argentina’s complicated political history including los desaparecidos (the disappearances of tens of thousands of people during the Dirty War), the Guerra de las Malvinas (Falklands War), and about the general demonstrations that go on today around the city almost daily.
Caminito in La Boca – a colorful and vibrant district with plenty of restaurants, shops and dance performances to check out. Be sure to take the recommended buses there as parts of the area are known for crime and muggings. Book tour →
Tango Queer – (tango classes) – it takes two to tango and at Tango Queer it doesn’t matter your gender or sexual orientation. Throw societal norms out the window and freely choose who you want to dance with and which role you’d like to take. Everyone here learns to lead and follow while enjoying this symbolic dance of Argentina.
La Marshall – (school famous for gay milonga) – considered by many as the city’s first gay tango, La Marshall may be easy to miss in downtown Buenos Aires; however, it’s the place to be for gay milonga. Here you’ll find a mixed and friendly crowd and partners are encouraged to switch roles breaking gender norms while enjoying this Argentine tradition.
Gay Tours in Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires Gay Pub Crawl – explore South America’s city that never sleeps on a tour stopping at some of the best gay-friendly bars and night clubs. Tours are on Thursdays and Saturdays starting at 8:30 PM. Start with beer, wine, and tapas for the first hour and then enjoy shots and drink discounts throughout the night. Book tour →
Restaurants and Cafes in Buenos Aires
Oviedo – this upscale and sophisticated restaurant boasts white linens and Parisian decor creating an elegant atmosphere perfect for a big night out. The menu features Mediterranean cuisine with Spanish favorites like tortilla and fresh seafood. Vegetarian options are available and don’t miss the excellent wine list.
Milion – elegant French mansion turned modern eatery. Start with a cocktail at the trendy upstairs bar and then enjoy tapas and traditional Argentinian dishes on the cozy outdoor patio or in the beautifully appointed dining room.
New Inside Restó – gay bar and restaurant with a discotec vibe featuring typical Argentine food and drinks. Stop by for a drag show or themed night featuring sexy go-go boys and colorful decor.
Festival – ready to party? This bar offers typical pub fare and an extensive list of fun, carefully-crafted cocktails in an industrial space. Open Thursday through Tuesday and closed on Wednesdays.
Don Julio – old-school Argentinian parilla featuring a traditional selection of hearty grilled meats, empanadas, veggies, and wine. Enjoy your meal on the patio – it’s worth the wait!
Pride Cafe – cute corner cafe and bar in the bohemian San Telmo neighborhood. Stop in for one of their many LGBT events and themed nights and outdoor seating that spills out onto the cobblestone street out front. It’s open until 8 pm and serves excellent coffee and snacks.
Buenos Aires Gay Bars
Peuteo – hetero-friendly video bar with an attractive staff, live DJs, and performances. It’s located in the heart of Palermo and stays open until 5 AM. Arrive early to avoid the queues later in the night.
Sitges – this gay bar is one of the more popular hangouts in the city. Things get going late here, normally well after midnight, and continue into the early morning. It's the place to be on Friday nights for the all-you-can-drink deal and on Sundays for a weekly drag night. Closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays, it’s a typical first stop before heading out to Glam Gay Club.
Flux Bar – a no-frills basement bar that offers a friendly, casual atmosphere for travelers and locals alike. Pop in for happy hour every day from 7-10 PM and live music before a night out on the town.
Feliza – stop by this queer-friendly bar for an artsy vibe and enjoy the live music. Stay for the free arcade games and foosball. In addition to tasty craft cocktails, there are vegan and vegetarian menu options.
Buenos Aires Gay Clubs and Parties
Amerika – a gay club that’s been around since 1999. Although you’ll pay a cover, it’s a mega-club with hot performers, live DJ, foam parties, and drag queens. Though it’s been an important dance club for the LGBT+ community for years, recent reviews are mixed.
Glam Gay Club – dance the night away under the disco ball as the DJ pumps house and pop music. The best time to arrive is after midnight to party with the hot young crowd hanging around the two bars and chill room.
Fiesta Jolie – on Wednesdays from 9 PM – 6 AM, check out this self-proclaimed party for people without prejudices. It’s a gay and lesbian bar with a young alternative crowd playing games like foosball in a fun and “be yourself” atmosphere.
La Warhol Party – Friday night pop party with themed nights, dress-up parties, and drag queens in a big warehouse-like space. Peak time is after 1 AM where you’ll find quite a young mixed crowd.
Fiesta Plop! – themed parties, performances, and DJs playing retro tunes including those from old children’s TV shows. It boasts a colorful vibe with a pop-culture theme catering to the younger generation (mainly 18-25 year-olds).
Rheo – one of the hottest gay/alternative club nights at Studio Crobar where you can party out on the terrace and enjoy multiple bars, a VIP area, go-go boys, and sexy performers.
Human Club – also at Crobar, Human is one of Buenos Aires’ biggest clubs complete with costumed dancers, hot performers, and drag queens. Get a drink at one of the five bars and dance to pop and electro music spun by the live DJs.
Buenos Aires Gay Saunas & Cruising Bars
Zoom – popular gay cruising bar and lounge with private rooms in Recoleta. Go down a few steps to this lower-level gay cruising bar where you’ll find an older crowd in a modern and intimate space with great music and a casual vibe.
Homo Sapiens – this sauna attracts an older crowd and offers showers, steam room, dark room, cubicles, a video room, and bar. It’s often touted as the biggest and best gay sauna in Buenos Aires.
Gay Events in Buenos Aires
BAGfest (Buenos Aires Gay Festival) – the biggest circuit event in Buenos Aires that takes place during Pride in November. Party until the sunrise at these circuit parties over two-days and featuring some of the hottest DJs and sexy dancers.
Buenos Aires Gay Pride (Orgullo) – starting back in 1992 with just 300 people, it’s grown to over 100,000 people from around the world. Taking place in November, Pride is a week of LGBT festivities including the annual pride parade on Avenida de Mayo from Plaza de Mayo to the National Congress Building. There the program continues with speeches, music, dancing, and then partying into the night at clubs and bars.
International Queer Tango Festival – founded in 2007, the queer tango festival usually takes place along with Pride in November. It draws in people from all over the world and consists of five days at four milongas with numerous workshops at venues across the city to promote tango for everyone regardless of roles, gender, and sex.
Day Trips from Buenos Aires
Montevideo – a port city and capital of Uruguay, it’s known for colonial-era architecture, beaches, churches, museums, theaters, night clubs, and tango, of course. With several transportation options, the most direct is a 2-hour ferry that brings you right into the city center. You’ll also enjoy unique views of both Buenos Aires and Montevideo. To save on costs, you could take a combination of ferry (1hr) and bus (3-4 hrs) making it a 4-5 hour trip. You can also fly; however, it can be costly and the costs of transport to and from the airports can get expensive. Traveling by bus is not recommended due to the long journey. Book tour →
Colonia de Sacramento – a short 1-hour ferry ride from Buenos Aires, you can make this a stop on your way to Montevideo. Sitting across the Rio de La Plata from Buenos Aires, this UNESCO-listed southwest city of Uruguay is best known for its charming historic neighborhood with buildings that date back to its time as a Portuguese settlement. Head over to the lighthouse for great views of the river. Book tour →
Lujan – located 68km/42mi northwest of Buenos Aires, this is a popular day trip from the city. It’s named after Argentina’s patron saint, the Virgin of Lujan, and famous for the large neo-gothic Basilica. Other sights to see are the Zoo Lujan, restaurants, and cute shops.
Tigre River Delta and San Isidro – escape the crowds of Buenos Aires and enjoy a relaxing afternoon touring the cobblestone streets and elegant mansions of San Isidro. Cruise around the canals and islands of the Tigre River Delta and stop by markets and the cathedral of San Isidro. Book tour →
San Antonio de Areco – a small town in the heart of the Pampas region about 113km/70mi (1.5 hours) northwest of Buenos Aires. Enjoy picturesque colonial streets, the Museum of the Gaucho (Argentine Cowboys), and visit nearby estancias (traditional rural ranches). The Fiesta de la Tradicion takes place in November to celebrate its rich heritage. Book tour →
Image credits: @travelbuenosaires
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