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Friday, April 13, 2012

The Palermo Rose Gardens: El Rosedal

There are a whole lotta parks in Buenos Aires, so it took me a while to find this "rose garden" park that everyone was talking about.  When I finally stumbled upon it, I felt like an idiot, because it has somewhere in the realm of a million roses (actually, more like 5,000, according to their website), thus justifying the name El Rosedal.

The Rosedal is actually a small part of the Parque Tres de Febrero, a park that sits between Libertador and Figuero Alcorta, starting at Sarmiento street.  Virtually every weekend, especially in the summer, there is a fun run, or a roller skating tournament, or a brake-dancing show, or some other event going on in the pedestrian street that covers the perimeter of the park.  This is one of the most lively parts of the city during weekend days, and it offers a fun day outside for families, or fantastic people-watching for the casual observer.  There are vendors located on the pedestrian street that rent bicycles and peddle carts, a paddle boat rental for the small lake and plenty of ducks and geese for the little ones to feed.  It is also a great place to bring your camera and get fantastic, colorful shots of the city.

I have gone to El Rosedal exactly 10 times.  I have entered the park exactly 5 times because the other 5 times it was closed.  Maybe it's just me, but the downside of this park is that it seems to be closed on the most awkward of occasions.  New Year's Day: closed.  All Mondays: closed.  Carnival: closed (apparently it is closed all holidays, I should have learned from my mistakes). And to top the cake, I have attempted to take my in-laws to visit this park at least 2 times, my mother-in-law being a huge fan of flowers, and they have yet to get inside the gates, it's always been closed.  So, be warned, check their website before visiting, because on even the most beautiful spring day.... the gates may be shut.

Jon and I have taken Gretchen to this park together 2 times, and in an extremely unfortunate turn of events, we both wore the exact same shirts on both visits.  Luckily, Gretchen changed considerably between the two visits, so you can easily tell the difference in the pictures.  In other news, we are looking forward to our next US trip so that we can buy some new clothes.
Daddy and Gretchen April, 2011
Daddy and Gretchen, April 2012
Mommy and Gretchen, April 2011

Mommy and Gretchen, April 2012
 For families that want to visit the roses, here is another tip.  The rose gardens are accessible from two different directions, one has a footbridge with 12 steps up and then 12 steps down, the other direction is a long sidewalk of these clay-rocks, both are pretty rough on a stroller.  Bring the jogging stroller on this outing, if you have one, and if not, consider a carrier for the little one.

Also, the clay stones leave clay dust on EVERYTHING.  It's impossible to resist this face that wants to play in the rocks, luckily, the dust washes out.

 One of my other visits to the Rose Gardens was with our friends the Wilsons, who visited us back in October 2010, when Gretchen was just a little bean in my belly.  We got some great pictures of the roses, and the adorable Wilson girls:
Emma and Roses
Rebecca amid a whole lot of roses
 There are nice fountains and lots of walking paths around the park as well, it really is a nice place to spend an afternoon.  The actual Rose Garden is pretty strict about not going on the grass, so if you pack a picnic, plan on eating it on the outskirts of the park.  Also, if you visit in summer, the lake is a big draw for mosquitos, so bring some spray.

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