Argentina, country of tango, wine and football
Carlos Gardel, the most famous singer of the Tango in history, was actually named Charles Gardes. He was born in 1890, in Toulouse. As for Astor Piazzolla, the other lover of body-to-body dances, he was Italian. Two Argentinean heroes, two immigrants.
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Since its origins, Argentina has never stopped being a country of welcome. And its multicultural population, made up of Indians, Spaniards, Lebanese and Syrians, and all those that Europe counted as farmers without land, makes this immense country a cosmopolitan cradle. It is no coincidence, then, if Argentina is considered to be a piece of the Old Continent in exile. Buenos Aires is, of course, a cultural capital for the whole of America. To love this country, you must have visited its cabaret clubs, where petticoats fly, but also its theatres and its modern opera houses. And those places where eager youths invent the electronic rhythms of tomorrow.
Inevitably urban, Argentinean life also unfolds in the provinces. In the north lies La Pampa, green and fertile. On the very long border with Chile (more than 5000 km), the Andean Cordillera spreads out its colossal peaks, among them the 7000m high Mount Aconcagua. And then, to the south, the third zone of a country with countless attractions, Patagonia stretches as far as the Tierra del Fuego. A burning Cape feared by explorers of old, it serves today as a second residence for those that the whole world considers to be lovers of wide open spaces. The waters of the Rio de la Plata, the widest river in the world, carry along the memories of this region known as Little Switzerland, whose glaciers and snowy mountains remind us of the original model. As for the Iguazu Falls, claimed by both Brazil and Argentina as their own, they rival Niagara Falls. A continent in itself, Argentina has both desert and Antarctic climates, depending on where you find yourself. From a gastronomic point of view, Argentina is not strictly speaking a paradise for the vegetarian, who will all the same have difficulty in resist the locally raised beef that inevitably fills the plates. On the other hand, everyone will appreciate the pleasures of the local vintages that make up part of the country's delicacies. A beverage which two protagonists of the country’s history, its best ambassadors, the writer Jorge Luis Borges and the footballer Diego Armando Maradona, never stopped tasting. The pen and the football, it's in this diversity that Argentina breathes. Return to introduction...