A streetscape of Buenos Aires with the Argentinian obelisk in the background

The home of tango and faded old world grandeur, Buenos Aires is a huge city and picking an area to stay can be a bit overwhelming – especially if it’s your first time in the city.

With a culture that involves being out late at night (dinner typically starts around 10pm), it’s important to pick somewhere you feel safe walking around late at night. There are many interesting, vibrant neighbourhoods in Buenos Aires and here’s just a few of the most popular places you may to choose to stay in the city.

Aerial photo of Buenos Aires on a sunny day

At a glance

  • Best for first-time visitors:Palermo Soho is easily accessible to major attractions with great dining and shopping options
  • Best for couples:Palermo Hollywood for nightlife, bars and restaurants on your doorstep
  • Best for families:Recoleta for wide streets and good restaurants in a well-established, upmarket neighbourhood
  • Best on a budget:San Telmo for tango, markets and bars in a picturesque setting
  • Best for a longer stay:Villa Crespo for an artsy, local experience of the city

Best area to stay in Buenos Aires for first-time visitors

Palermo Soho

  • Vibrant atmosphere with a range of accommodation

  • Good public transport links

  • An abundance of bars, restaurants and shops

Bars and restaurants at Palermo Soho, Buenos Aires

Palermo Soho is a bit out of the city centre, but the major attractions are easily accessible by metro. The plus about this neighbourhood is that it has a really nice vibe, wide streets and lots of parks and green space.

It’s also near many of the sites in Buenos Aires and has a lot of nice cafes, bars and restaurants. There are also some gorgeous boutiques and interesting little shops, which makes it a good spot for shopping.

While it’s a quiet area in the day, there’s quite a lot of nightlife in the evenings, so be prepared for some noise. If you’re a light sleeper and travelling with children, pick a hotel that isn’t on any of the main streets or near bars or restaurants (which can close quite late).

Stay at Mine Boutique Hotel situated near restaurants, parks and markets

Best area to stay in Buenos Aires for couples

Palermo Hollywood

  • Range of great restaurants nearby

  • Close to bars and nightlife

  • Convenient metro connections

A street in Palermo Hollywood, Buenos Aires

On the outskirts of Palermo Soho, Palermo Hollywood offers a slightly grungier, more creative experience. It’s a very quiet neighbourhood during the day, and you may find yourself travelling quite bit to see things in other places in the city. Despite that, it’s easy to connect on the metro and there’s lots of good bars and restaurants, making it a great option for at night.

If you’re the sort of traveller who wants to be out during the day, with good food and nightlife close by at night, this is a great area to stay. Popular with young professionals, you’ll find a more local crowd here than in nearby Palermo Soho.

Stay at the Ilum Experience Home, a beautifully-decorated boutique hotel close to good restaurants and bars.

Best area to stay in Buenos Aires for families


  • Safe neighbourhood with wide, tree-lined streets

  • Parks and open spaces close by

  • Good food and shopping options

 The colourful Recoleta Cultural Centre in Buenos Aires

One of the most established areas in Buenos Aires, Recoleta is renowned for its wide streets, great restaurants and bars and lots of shops. Conveniently located, it makes an easy base for sightseeing, without long commutes to the major sites. It’s also a lovely area with beautiful architecture and tree-lined streets, and you can admire some of the most expensive real estate in the city.

It’s a safe neighbourhood and relatively pedestrian-friendly, which helps with travelling with younger children. The streets around here are also pram and stroller friendly, while there’s nearby parks to keep active children busy between outings. A number of hotels have larger, family rooms available or you can rent an apartment if you prefer to have your own cooking facilities.

Stay at Urban Suites Recoleta Boutique Hotel with suitable rooms for families

Best area to stay in Buenos Aires on a budget

San Telmo

  • The quintessential Buenos Aires experience

  • Picturesque with markets, tango and outdoor dining

  • Affordable accommodation in the middle of the city

The weekly San Telmo Market

One of the oldest barrios in Buenos Aires, San Telmo is somewhere every tourist should visit during their stay. With cobblestone streets, tango dancers and markets, it’s a real-life vision of what comes to mind when you picture Buenos Aires. Historically, it’s had a bit of a reputation for being unsafe, but that’s improved over recent years, with a large influx of tourists and has become a very popular place to stay. Still, be aware of your surroundings when you're out at late at night.

There are a number of backpackers and cheaper hotels here, making it a good option for travellers on a budget. It can be a bit busy, with lots of people wandering through the streets during the day and a bit noisy at night. Saying that it’s a fun, vibrant and picturesque place to stay, where you feel very close to the action. Being near the city centre, it’s also very easy to visit the major tourist attractions.

Stay at Patios de San Telmo for comfortable hotel rooms at an affordable price.

Best area to stay in Buenos Aires for a longer visit

Villa Crespo

  • Artsy neighbourhood with impressive street art

  • Quieter area away from the hustle and bustle

Villa Crespo mural

Just on the edge of Palermo, Villa Crespo is a great place to stay if you’re going to be in the city for a while. There aren’t any major sites, but it’s an interesting mix of cultures and has a vibrant, artsy flair. One of the city’s up-and-coming areas, it’s a great place to walk around while being away from the busiest parts of the city.

There is a range of impressive street art in Villa Crespo, so take the opportunity to wander the street and discover local art. It's also gaining a reputation as a new gastronomical capital in Buenos Aires and you won't have to go far to find great food. There are fewer tourists in this part of the city, so be prepared to practice your Spanish.

Stay at Krista Boutique Hotel or rent an apartment for a longer trip

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Roxanne de Bruyn

Author - Roxanne de Bruyn

Roxanne is the founder and editor of Faraway Worlds. She is a freelance writer and guidebook author and has written for several travel publications, including Lonely Planet, TripAdvisor and The Culture Trip. With a background in communications, she has studied ancient history, comparative religion and international development, and has a particular interest in sustainable tourism.

Originally from South Africa, Roxanne has travelled widely and loves learning the stories of the places she visits. She enjoys cooking, dance and yoga, and usually travels with her husband and young son. She is based in New Zealand.

Last Updated 2 June 2022

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