Sunday, 18 January 2009

Tigre and the Delta 17/01/2009

Day 21 Saturday 17th January 2009

Today we went to the town of Tigre which is a one hour train ride north of Buenos Aires and part of the Rio de la Plata delta.

The air conditioned train went from Retiro station and the fare was one of the great bargains in a country which recognises the need to price public transport low in order to encourage its use (2.7 pesos return (about 54pence)). Because we left early, it was not too packed. One is used to buskers on London Transport but never a Harpist! This one entertained the carriage with a medley of traditional Argentinean tunes.

This is a snatched photograph of him seated a few seats away, taking a posed photograph was not possible. There is also a constant stream of people selling things you did not know you needed. We were offered handbags, socks, sweets, a strange squeaky toy, fortune telling etc as well as being asked straight out for money.

Busy Waterway

Tigre is a working town in the Delta above Buenos Aires which also uses tourism as a significant source of income. The river is very busy with not only Water Taxis but also tourist boats. The taxis carry passengers inside and

Dogs on Roof

their luggage and dogs on the roof.

Speeding Water Taxi (2)

All boats zoom around the waterways at breakneck speed - the wake of this taxi indicates how fast it is travelling. Cutting up other drivers is the norm unless you are overtaking the police (who also travel by boat).

Police Boat

The museum


and the Boat Club (of course)

Boat Club 

front onto the river. Ship building and ship maintenance are major users of the river

Working Boats

although some ships seem beyond repair

Wrecked Boat

Being a delta, the waterways take the place of roads and therefore everything travels to the houses on the waterways. Some boats travel around stopping at house jetties for the

Travelling Shop 

owners to come down and select their daily

Water Shop and Sarmiento House

food needs etc. This one has stopped near a house which used to be lived in by the seventh president of Argentina, Domingo Faustino Sarmiento (1811-1888) - it is now preserved as a museum. Others are moored and you go to them by your own boat to shop.

Water SHop (1) 

as in this shop and petrol station (for boats - no cars). To get to the local park, you go by boat


as you do for the local restaurant.


The houses vary in grandeur from great

Lived in House (2)

Lived in House (3)

Lived In House (1) 

to simple

Nice Boat Steps

to wrecks - some of the wrecks are very picturesque.

Wrecked House (1)

Wrecked House (2)

Pat likes jetty

A surprising number of houses are up for sale.

Some Houses for Sale

Tigre operates a large arts and crafts market

Craft Market

for the numerous BA residents who visit the town, a speciality of the area seems to be reed based products, probably because of

Water Reeds 

the large number of reed beds which fill the delta. The train ride back was equally as easy as that going although by then, the temperature had risen to 35 Centigrade (a bit of a shock when we were used to zero or less) and the humidity level was very high.

In the evening we went to Tango Porteno as a last evening out. This was a well produced Tango Show (rather than dance) in a historical theatre in the centre of town. Upon arrival, we were both asked if we would "pose in an intimate manner with two Tango Dancers and have our pictures taken". I think something was lost in translation there. The show in general and much of the dancing in particular, was very good and we think the general plot was to narrate the history of Tango and the role of the Theatre. The theatre provided a pick-up and return service to our hotel as well as drinks and snacks to keep us satisfied during the show.

if you are interested in seeing exerts from the show, the costumes etc, click to the Tango Porteno name above and you will go to the theatre web site.

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