When you need a break from the porteño pizza, beef and light-salted milanesa, the Chinatown, “Barrio Chino” in Spanish, is a good option. Whether you like to cook Vietnamese, Thai or Indian food at home, this is definitely the place to come shopping the ingredients (our to get a sweet fortune cookie). Located along some three blocks, a great 11-metre high Chinese archway welcomes tourists at the entrance being a popular photo object. The main street has its street name written in mandarin, and following it, it is crammed with Chinese street food, restaurants, Chinese grocery stores, dragon statues and murals painted with gold fish. There are also some great fish markets, Chinese plastic items, sweet, cheap fruits, and Chinese mango and Lychee juice.
The Barrio Chino is a child of a boom of immigration from China, Japan, Thailand, and Taiwan in the 1980’s. Nowadays it is without doubt the heart of the Chinese community in Argentina, consisting of around 200 000 people. Around town, there are many Chinese working in their own supermarkets with Argentine food, called “chinos”, and loads of Chinese dry cleaners businesses called “tintorerías”.
– Every year in February, the Barrio Chino’s biggest event takes place: The celebration of the Chinese New Year. There are also a Buddhist temple here.
– Be aware that a stroll in Chinatown is extremely popular on weekends. Most shops are open between 9 AM and PM.
– To get there, catch the Subte to the Belgrano stop, three blocks away from Chinatown. Start at the intersection of Juramento and Arribeños in Belgrano.