San Antonio de Areco is the prettiest town in the pampas. Located 113km northwest of Buenos Aires, it welcomes many day-tripping porteños (residents Bueonos Aires), who come for the peaceful atmosphere and picturesque colonial streets. The town dates from the early 18th century and preserves many gaucho and criollo traditions, including the fine silverwork and saddlery of its artisans. Gauchos from all over the pampas gather here for November’s Fiesta de la Tradición, when you can catch them, and their horses, strutting the cobbled streets in all their finery.

San Antonio de Areco’s compact town center and quiet streets are very walkable. Around the Plaza Ruiz de Arellano, named in honor of the town’s founding estanciero (ranch owner), are several historic buildings, including the iglesia parroquial (parish church).

Like many other small towns in this part of Argentina, Areco shuts down during the afternoon siesta.