The hills ebb and flow throughout the neighborhood and there are so many of them you wonder if they could even slow Lance Armstrong, ‘roids or no ‘roids.
As my buddy Xaq and I were walking around, we decided at one point to take a taxi to get to one destination, and we were glad we did because it would have been a brutal climb.
At other times, we made them. We wanted to feel Comuna Buenos Aires.
There is no metro station here, although there is a blue bus that passes through the district, a bus that says La Milagrosa.
We never took it, but we took a lot of photos and a lot of knowledge from the trip.
History of Buenos Aires
Like so many other parts of the city, Buenos Aires is not only a comuna, it’s a neighborhood too.
The neighborhood is in the center of an area bordered by the Ayacucho (or Calle 49) to the north, Carrera 39 and La Asomadera park to the west, a smattering of neighborhoods to the south near Via Las Palmas (the road to Jose Maria Cordova International Airport), and Santa Elena to the east.
Those hills, in Santa Elena, are where some people came from to settle this part of the city. Others came from other parts of the valley, when Don Modesto Molina was selling lots in 1974, according to Comuna 9 Medellin, a blog about the district.
Older maps show that at one time the valley was pockmarked with pocket communities, none of them connected, each a horse ride away from the other.
Buenos Aires started off the same way.
Today it’s a working class region of 135,000 people with lots of potential, as they city is undertaking an ambitious project to revitalize the area to create a better quality of life.
Points of Interest
I mentioned La Asomadera briefly and it might be the best place to spend some time in this area.
It’s a big park with recreational facilities such as a playground, outdoor gym and swimming pool. There are also running trails and gazebos where you can eat and relax.
It’s all atop a hill that overlooks parts of the city.
If you want a smaller park, go to Parque La Milagrosa, which is way up the hill to the east. Here, too, can you get a nice view of parts of the city.
This is a traditional Colombian comuna, a place where the best food you find will be the kind native to this country.
I had a nice bandeja paisa at Restaurante Sanoca, a restaurant that overlooks the west side of Parque La Milagrosa. It was only 8,000 pesos (about $4).
I did notice a pizza and lasagna place, even a Chinese restaurant, but I get the feeling you can find better options elsewhere.
You won’t think of it as the Zona Rosa but there are a handful of fun bars where you can have a good time.
This isn’t where you go to find a shopping mall, but Centro Comercial San Diego in northern Poblado isn’t too far.
Here’s why I don’t like crime statistics or someone talking about a bad experience: people look at them in a vacuum.
Most of those numbers are tied to people involved in nefarious activities, not the everyday folks just trying to make a living. I have two good friends from Comuna Buenos Aires, Luis and Milena, and neither has ever complained about anything.
As for Dave, he has admitted he should have been more careful with his Blackberry when he was in the taxi.
Now here’s my experience in Comuna 9: people will stare because they’re curious. They just want to talk.
Now if you walk around drunk at 3 in the morning…
Cost of Living
Because 87 percent of the comuna is considered Estrado 2 or 3 on a scale with 6 being the highest, you can find great deals here.
The gringos have not invaded. Yet.
That means prices a little less than Belen but a little more than Centro, around 400,000 to 1 million pesos per month ($200 to $500), with higher costs the result of apartments already furnished with all services included.
If I were looking to save money, I would live there. But I don’t have to. I found a great deal recently in Envigado.