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Study Abroad Stories Captured in Buenos Aires, Argentina

April 29, 2024
by Michael Pugliese

Study Abroad Stories Captured in Buenos Aires, Argentina with CEA CAPA 

These photos aren't just a collage of my Buenos Aires study abroad program with CEA CAPA—they're a story. They capture the city's vibrant energy, the warmth of its people, and the study abroad friendships that bloomed faster than I ever thought possible.  

What I Captured 

Argentina’s Culinary Culture 

The journey starts with flour-dusted hands and delicious anticipation. Our food and culture professor leads us in crafting empanadas at a pulpería, the quintessential Argentine comfort food. This wasn't just a cooking class—it was a portal into Argentina's culinary heritage. 

A group of study abroad students standing around a counter in a restaurant

Our food and culture professor took us to learn how to make traditional empanadas. 

History breathes life into the pulperías. These once-bustling social hubs, now historical landmarks, stand as testaments to the city's past. Within their walls, I can almost hear the bartering merchants and the laughter of friends gathered over shared meals. The spirit of community that thrived here still resonates with visitors, reminding me that connection has always been at the heart of Buenos Aires.  

A room with tables and chairs

Traditional pulperías were started as a place for the community to come together to barter and socialize. The pulperías that still stand showcase the history of Buenos Aires. 

Argentine Commerce 

The pulse of the present also beats strong at the San Telmo Market. Stepping through its gates is like entering a time capsule, with generations-old vendors proudly displaying their wares. Families who've honed their craft for decades stand shoulder-to-shoulder with younger entrepreneurs. It's a testament to the enduring legacy of Argentine commerce. 

A market with many boxes of vegetables

The San Telmo Market has been open for over 120 years. Today you can see that many of the original meat, produce, and prepared food vendors are still around. 

But Buenos Aires is more than just history and hustle. It's the rhythm of tango echoing in Barrio Chino, where passionate dancers weave their magic under the eyes of the locals. Witnessing their artistry is a powerful reminder of the city's soul. Fere, a CEA CAPA employee here, recommended we visit this gazebo to watch the tango; he’s full of recommendations on events and places that showcase Argentine culture. 

A group of people dancing in a square

Our professors love showing us new places in the city that encapsulate the culture. Here are tango dancers that meet every Saturday night at the same gazebo in Barrio Chino. 

The program wasn't all cultural immersion, though. CEA CAPA excursions took students for a day at an all-inclusive resort. This was a well-needed break from city life, offering us a chance to relax and bond with classmates. We traded textbooks for piña coladas, strengthening friendships that began with awkward introductions just weeks prior.  

A group of lounge chairs on grass by a beach

The CEA CAPA excursions are beautifully done. Having a day at an all-inclusive resort was a relaxing break from the city. 

The unexpected joys of the program resort excursion are also captured in these snapshots. My encounter with Willy, a fluffy canine charmer, is a case in point.  

A dog lying in the sand

Argentinians love their dogs, and I have made many four-legged friends because of this. Willy here was too cute to keep for myself. 

CEA CAPA Buenos Aires Program Director and professor Maggie Fitzgerald, with her infectious energy and local connections (like the venue for our unforgettable wine tasting), truly went above and beyond to create study abroad programs that feel like a family adventure.  

A table with chairs and glasses in a room with a window

Professor Maggie Fitzgerald has some of the best connections in the city for her food and culture course. This was the venue of our wine tasting. 

Study Abroad Friendships 

My final photos capture the essence of this whole experience—a group of individuals, brought together by a shared desire to explore, who became, in just a few short weeks, a "little family." 

A couple of study abroad friends sitting at a table

I never imagined I'd become as close as I have with a group of people in less than a month. But already we're a little family in a big city. 

We're no longer just classmates; we're Buenos Aires adventurers, forever bound by memories of tango nights, pulpería explorations, and empanada-making mishaps.  

A group of study abroad students posing for a photo

The group excursions are great because you meet people within your program that you might not otherwise meet. Before Tigre, I only knew half of the people in this picture. 

These 10 photos are more than just memories; they're a testament to the transformative power of studying abroad. 

Study abroad friends playing a game with a wooden block tower

The experience isn't just what you do and where you go. It’s who you meet. 

Michael Pugliese is the Content Creator - Photographer in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and is currently studying at University of Massachusetts.
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