Cafe Tortoni is the oldest coffee shop in the country of Argentina! Believe it or not, this French-style cafe with live Tango performances in Buenos Aires was founded in 1858 and is still as popular as ever.Cafe Tortoni, Buenos Aires

©Eduardo M./Flickr

A must for tourists as well as locals, you can come here to have coffee, to meet a friend, or be a part of any of the many events that they put on. When wandering along Avenida de Mayo, you must not walk past Cafe Tortoni.

There is a small stage where tango shows are held and because Cafe Tortoni is so small, the performers usually weave in between the restaurant-goers! Below is a video clip of a performance:

Some of Argentina’s greatest writers used to go to this cafe, and it’s still a meeting point for intellectuals (and non-intellectuals, don’t worry).

While it is true that Buenos Aires has tons of great cafes, this one is worth a visit also from a historical sense. If you are downtown and walking on Avenida de Mayo, Cafe Tortoni is a must stop, where, in addition to the shows and the coffee and the food, you can learn about the countless demonstrations that have passed by on their way to the Plaza de Congreso. Stained glass, yellowing marble and bronzes; this place tells more about its history by simply existing than pictures can describe.

2 Replies to “Cafe Tortoni: A Must-See When in Buenos Aires

  1. One thing people should know about the cafe’ though… definitely don’t go expecting to eat a full dinner and see a show. It’s definitely cafe’ food. Decent food, but not a full dinner kind of place.

    (At least that was our experience.)

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