About Argentina

Argentina is located in the southern extreme of South America. With a continental extension of 2.791.810 Km2.(including Malvinas Islands, other South Atlantic Islands and part of Antarctica).


Argentina is the second largest country in South America and the eighth in the world.
Including the Antarctic Sector, Argentina claims a total area of 3.761.274 Km2
It is some 1425 Km across at its widest from east to west and stretches 3.800 Km from the north to the south.
it is bounded by Bolivia and Paraguay on the north, Brasil, Uruguay and the Atlantic Ocean on the east, and by the Atlantic Ocean and Chile on the west and south.
The western part of Argentina is occupied by the Andes mountain range, the great mountain system of the South American continent. Here we find the Aconcagua (6.959 m), the highest peak in the world outside those existing in the Himalaya.
There also exists several parallel ranges to the east of the Andes, such as the Eastern Mountain range and the Sub-Andean sierras to the north ,The Pampean Sierras to the north and centre from the Aconquija up to the Sierras of Córdoba and San Luis, and Buenos Aires sierras systems such as Tandilia and Ventania.
The central part and the east of Argentina (except for the parallel groups to the Andes already mentioned) consist almost entirely of a flat or gently undulating plain.

Climate and Regions

Argentina has exceptional natural beauties, for it comprises a diverse territory of mountains, plateaux and plains with all the climatic variations.
There are several climatic and landscape regions.

Population

Argentina has a low demographic density. It consists of around 36 millon people, mainly established in the urban centres. The 85% of the population is descendant of inmigrants from Europe. As opposed to most Latin American countries, in Argentina there are relatively few Indian half castes (people of mixed races: european and indian). Almost half of the population of the country live in the Federal Capital and the province of Buenos Aires. The urban population makes up the 88% of the whole whereas the rural population represents the 22%.
The figures give us a population density of 13 inhabitants per km2 with an annual growing of 1,5 %

Argentina's wide variety of ecosystems is reflected on the great number of activities that can be enjoyed throughout the country. Each location offers a range of opportunities for visitors to enjoy in close contact with nature, its challenges and secrets, and surrounded by landscapes that make visitors feel like discoverers. Trekking, mountain-biking, mountaineering, white-water rafting, canoeing, sailing, hydro-speeding, rides in 4WD vehicles, hang-gliding, paragliding, cart-sailing, diving, sky and windsurfing, are some of the most popular recreational and sport activities that can be practiced, and which are constantly renewed and adapted to suit visitors' preferences.

Language

Spanish is the official language and is spoken by the great majority of Argentinians. English, French and Italian are, in lesser or greater degree, widespread languages within the country

Culture

Argentina's cultural roots are mainly europeans and that is clearly reflected in its arquitecture, music, literature and lifestyle. It has an intense cultural activity. It is seen in the festivities, expositions, cinemas, theatres, and concerts that take place in the principal cities. Buenos Aires has aproximately 100 cinemas and 90 theatres with a great diversity of spectacles that turn it into one of the cities with the major theatrical activity in Latin America
In the Borges, Recoleta y General San Martín cultural centres the cultural dynamics of the country and the world are exposed.
The Colon Theatre, which is among the best three lyrical theatres, stands out for its arquitecture and its perfect acoustics. It is visited by the most outstanding personalities of the classical music, ballet and drama of the world. Other important theatres are the National Cervantes and the Municipal Gral. San Martín Theatres.
Painting and Sculpture are given great importance. This is reflected in the prestigious art galleries existing in the principal cities of the country.
The characteristic music of the city of Buenos Aires is the world-famous tango. Folklore includes several and varid rythms and styles according to the different regions of the country.


The typical Argentine food is asado (barbecue: meat cooked over live coals), appart from empanadas ( a sort of turnover meat pie or pastry that comes with a variety of other stuffings), tamales ( a dish made of corn meal, chicken or meat wrapped in corn husks), humita (dish made of grated corn, sweet peppers and tomatoes wrapped in the green leaves of corn) and locro ( dish made of meat, potato, pumpkin, corn and sweet pepper).
However, and due to the important migrating current that populated the country , there exists a quite varied international cuisine: Spanish, Italian, French, German, Scandinavian, Greek, English, Sweddish, Hungarian, Dutch, Chilean, Mexican, Basque, Jewish, Russian, Ukranian, Chinese, Japanese, Thailander and Arabian.
Our country characteristic drink is mate (infusion).
The quality of its wines and meats is worldly known and the new Argentine cuisine has reached an international level standing out due to its qualified chefs.

Sports

Even though several sports are practised, futball is the most outstanding one. In the city of Buenos Aires there are a large number of stadiums, some of them with a capacity of more than 40.000 people. Pato is the autoctonuos sport and Polo has reached international importance due to the quality of its players.
Other important sports practised by a large number of people are: tennis, rugby, hockey, volleyball, basquetball, motorsports, golf, water sports and beach sports.
The ski enthusiasts can choose from numerous winter centres to practise it.
Sporting fishing can be practised in the whole country, giving the major importance to the obtention of the huge Dorados and the varieties of Salmonidae .
Due to its extension and diversity of climates Argentina offer the opportunity to practise any kinds of traditional and adventure sports such as motonautic, wind sailing, boating, kayak, rafting, scuba diving, trekking, mountain climbing, mountain bike, parashuting, hang gliding, ski, snowboard, small and big game hunting among others

Religion

The official religion of Argentina is the Apostolic Roman Catholic, but there is complete religious freedom. Other religions practised, in a lesser degree though, are Protestantism, Judaism, Islamism, and the Greek and Russian Orthodox religion among others.

Currency

The Argentine Peso is the official currency.

Bills come in 2, 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 pesos. One pesos equals one hundred cents.
2 pesos are blue (Bartolomé Mitre 1821-1906), 5 pesos are green (José de San Martín 1778-1850), 10 pesos are brown (Manuel Belgrano 1770-1820), 20 pesos are red (Juan Manuel de Rosas 1793-1877), 50 pesos are grey (Domingo Faustino Sarmiento 1811-1888) and 100 pesos are violet (Julio Argentino Roca 1843-1914).

Coins are 1 peso and then there are coins from 50,25,5 and 1 cents. 1 peso coins are golden and silver plated; 50 cents coins are golden; 25,10 and 5 cents coins may be either golden or silver plated. Finally copper 1 cent coins are rarely used.
Banking hours are from Monday to tuesday from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM.

How to get there and travel

Argentina offers modern means of transport: air, sea, river,overland and urban.
The main airlines of the world travel to Argentina arriving, most of them, at the Internacional Ministro Pistarini Airport (located in Ezeiza), connected to the city of Buenos Aires by means of a motorway (35 Km). It is also possible to arrive at the cities of Cordoba and Mendoza by air from some bordering countries. Or even, you can reach Argentina by overland transport from these countries


To travel by car within our country there exists an important paving railway system perfectly signalled (if you are from abroad you must have international driving license).
Several bus companies work along the whole country reaching, in general, all the cities in comfortable units (some of them are cimatized including colour TV, toilette and hostess service).
There are several airlines that perform domestic flights to the main cities of Argentina, with the possibility of making combinations later on with overland transports to go to other smaller urban centres either by bus, taxis or remisses.
The underground system in Buenos Aires (founded in 1913, was the first subway of Latin America), is one of the quickest ways of travelling within the city. This system currently comprises around 46 km, includes 80 stations and moves more than 250 millon passengers per year. The ticket fare is $ 0,90 and subway services operate from 6:00 AM to 11:00 PM Monday throught Saturday and 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM on Sundays. Tickets or subtepass are purchased in the subway stations. Within the city of Buenos Aires there are 32.000 taxis. There are painted yellow and black. The exact fare is displayed on an electronical meter. An average travel cost is $ 8. There are many radiotaxis companies. They are ordered by telephone and pick up passengers anywhere. They do not charge extra and they are safer depending on the hour and the place.
The remise is a service similar to the radiotaxi, only the cars have no markings and they calculate the fare based on the distance. As long as buses are concerned, the tariff is related to the stations travelled and it must be payed by introducing coins (according to the value of your trip) in automatic machines. It is not necessary to hace exact change because the machines return money, but it is necesary to hace coins because the driver does not change bills. You must get on by the front door and get off by the back or central door depending on the bus model. The vehicles are painted in different colours according to the line they belong to, which, by the way, make up more than a hundred.
The train is a good alternative to get out of the metropolitan area. Lines going north depart from Retiro station and lines headed south leave from Constitución station. The Federico Lacroze and Once stations are the starting points for trains headed northwest and southeast respectively.

Tourist Information

Tourism Secretariat of the Nation, Tourism Information Centre: Av. Santa Fe 883, (1059) Buenos Aires, tel. 4312-2232 ó 0-800-555-0016 (free call)

Aeropuertos Argentina 2000: Aut. Tte. Gral. Ricchieri s/n. Phone: 4576-5300. Information: 4576-5111
Jorge Newbery Airport: R. Obligado s/n. Tel: 4514-1515 al 23 (8 AM to 9 PM)
Ezeiza International Airport: Aut. Tte. Gral. Ricchieri s/n. Information: 5480-6111 (8 AM to 8 PM)

In the Province Houses you can get more detailed information about each region:

BUENOS AIRES Av. Callao 237 4371-7045/47 4371-9909
CATAMARCA Av. Córdoba 2080 4374-6891/5
CHACO Av. Callao 322 Piso 1 4372-0961 4372-3045 4372-5209 4374-6531
CHUBUT Sarmiento 1172 4382-2009
CORDOBA Av. Callao 332 4372-2615 4372-2638 4372-2725 4373-4277
CORRIENTES San Martín 333, Piso 4 4394-7418 4394-7432 4394-7390
ENTRE RIOS Suipacha 844 4328-2284 4328-9327
FORMOSA Hipólito Yrigoyen 1429 4381-2037 4381-7048 4383-0721
JUJUY Av. Santa Fe 967 4393-6096 4394-3012
LA PAMPA Suipacha 346 4326-0511 4326-0603 4326-1145
LA RIOJA Av. Callao 745 4813-3417/9 4815-1929
MENDOZA Av. Callao 445 4371-0835 4371-7301 4374-1105
MISIONES Av. Santa Fe 989 4322-0677 4322-0686 4322-1671
NEUQUEN Tte. Gral. Juan D. Perón 687 4326-6385 4326-9265 4327-2454
RIO NEGRO Tucumán 1916 4371-5599 4371-7273
SALTA Av. Pte. Roque Sáenz Peña 933, Piso 5 y 9 4326-0501 4326-2456/59 4326-1314
SAN JUAN Sarmiento 1251 4382-5580 4382-9241
SAN LUIS Azcuenaga 1083/87 4822-0426 4822-3641
SANTA CRUZ 25 de Mayo 277, Piso 1 4325-3098/3102
SANTA FE Montevideo 373, Piso 2 4375-4570/573 4375-4635
SANTIAGO DEL ESTERO Florida 274, Piso 1 4322-4458 4326-9418
TIERRA DEL FUEGO, ANTARTIDA E ISLAS DEL ATLANTICO SUR Sarmiento 745, Piso 4 4322-7324/7524 4311-0233 4325-1809
TUCUMAN Suipacha 140 4322-0010/0299 4322-0492

Maps

You can get different kinds of streets and roads maps in most kiosks and offices of Automovil Club Argentino (Central Sede : Av. Libertador 1850)

Time, Electricity, Weights and Measures.

the official Argentine hour is 3 (three) hours less to that of Greenwich.
The electricity used is of 220 v (volts) and 50 Hz (Hertz).
The unit of measure for distance is the meter and its derivations : el milimeter (0,001 metre), el centimeter (0,01 meter) y el kilometer (1000 metros).
For Weights the unit of measure is the gram and its derivations: el kilogram (1000 grams).
The unit for capacity is the litre and cubic centimeters (cc) (1000 cc = 1 litre).

Equivalences: - 1 gram = 0,035 ounces
- 1 kilogram = 2,3 pounds
- 1 centimeter = 0,39 inches = 0,033 feet
- 1 meter = 3,28 feet = 1,09 yards
- 1 kilometer = 0,62 miles
- 0º centigrades = 32º fahrenheit
- 100º centigrades = 212º fahrenheit