Early explorers to this are included Jaun de Solis in 1516 but he was killed on his journey by natives. Sebastian Cabot came to this area around 1526 and in 1536 Pedro de Mendoza and his expedition built a fort here. These early Spaniards were forced to withdraw due to hostility with the natives in the area. In the 16th century there were several town founded. In 1580 Buenos Aires was founded which opened up the sea. The southern area of the country was largely native during this early growth. In 1776 Buenos Aires became the capital of the country.
The British tried to capture Buenos Aires in 1806 and 1807 but they had to withdraw. After 1808 links between Argentina and Spain weakened and all links were broken in 1816. On July 9th 1816 the country was called The United Provinces of the River Plate.
In the 19th century the country consisted of what is now Bolivia, Uruguay, and Argentina. In the 1820s the state broke up and in 1825 Bolivia became independent with Uruguay becoming a buffer state between Argentina and Brazil in the year 1828 after a war.
1835 saw a dictator rise to power, General Juan Manuel de Rosas. A rebellion in 1852 removed him from power due to his policies. In 1857 the first railroad was built in the country and by 1900 over 10,000 miles off it existed. By the early 1900s it was the richest country in all of South America.
There are various climates in Argentina. The north has hot and humid summers and a drier winter with drought. The central part of the country has hot summers and cool winters. In the south there are warm summers and colder winters with heavy snow in the mountain zones. Average annual temperatures range from 24°C (75°F) to 11°C (51°F) in Buenos Aires.
There are about 40 languages spoken in Argentina with Spanish being the dominant language. There are native and other foreign languages spoken as well. In 2010 there were about 40 million people speaking Spanish in the country which is almost the entire population.
This country uses the Peso as its currency.
Argentina Major Cities
- Buenos Aires about 15.4 million
- Córdoba about 1.6 million
- Rosario about 1.3 million
- Mendoza about 1.1 million
- La Plata about 950 thousand
Things to do in Argentina (Cities and main point of interest)
Argentina most visited country in South America and there’s a tourist boom in Buenos Aires. There’s great architecture, nightlife and shopping experiences there. In this city you’ll find the Casa Rosada which is the executive branch of the Argentina government. The Kavanagh building was the first skyscraper in the city. The National Library is the largest in the country. The Teatro Colón is a world renowned opera house.
Córdoba is the most culturally rich city in the country. One of the best known museums is the Caraffa Fine Arts Museum. There are many historical monuments left over form colonial times such as the Jesuit Cathedral, whose altar is made of stone and silver. There are festivals here year round.
In terms of cuisine there’s a blend of Mediterranean influences with Spanish and Italian influences. Typical eating consists of homemade food and recipes are passed down from one generation to the next. People here eat a lot of beef and asado or barbecue is a staple way of eating meat. There’s Chorizo or pork sausage, sweetbreads, lamb, goat and other foods eaten. Italian staples like pasta and pizza, are also common in Argentina. Mate is a common drink which is dried leaves and twigs of the yerba mate plant.
While there are many malls in Argentina handicrafts are a big part of their culture so you’ll find many handmade items in this country. Leather is important and one well known souvenir is the mate gourd which is used to make their traditional drink. Casa López is one of the best leather stores in Buenos Aires.Plata Lappas in the city has great silver items.Bahía Blanca Plaza Shopping, and Tortugas Open Mall are some sample malls in the country.