Buenos Aires is known not only for its premium quality meat, tango and mate, but also for being the capital of one of the best national soccer teams in the world. However, soccer is just one of the many sports practiced in Argentina. If you are planning on visiting the city and want to enjoy the best sporting events in Buenos Aires, find some of the best in the following article.
Although soccer is the most popular sport in the country, there are several other highly regarded sports that might be of interest to you. Tennis, basketball, boxing, polo, race car driving, rugby, swimming, martial arts…Argentinians of all ages practice a wide array of sports, several at a professional level and even compete in international events, obtaining all sorts of prizes.
Soccer is life
With a total of 36 stadiums, Buenos Aires has the highest number of stadiums in the world, surpassing even São Paulo, London, Rio de Janeiro and Madrid, to name a few. Regardless of the team you support, the place you are from or where you are headed, attending a soccer match is the best way to actually feel and live Argentinian culture.
Whether the team wins or loses, fans will chant, scream, shout and cry for 90 minutes, and no other experience can compare to celebrating a goal with strangers. Soccer events are one of the most popular sporting events in Buenos Aires, gathering the biggest crowds and definitely a must-see performance.
Important: Argentinians are not known for their sportsmanship, so avoid provoking anyone in a soccer match.
There are several important sporting events related to soccer each year:
- the local cup (Campeonato Argentino), played between August and May
- the South American championship (Copa Libertadores), played every year between May and October
- the Argentine Supercup, normally played during the summer
Major sporting events in Buenos Aires unrelated to soccer
Argentina has given the world several outstanding athletes such as Emanuel Ginóbili (basketball), Luciana Aymar (field hockey), Juan Martín del Potro and Gabriela Sabatini (tennis), Felipe Contepomi and Agustín Pichot (rugby), Adolfo Cambiasso (polo) and Hugo Conte (volleyball), among others.
The state provides several subsidies to help local athletes access international platforms, and quite a few sports athletes excel at have national championships where to practice and perfect their skills. Most of them take place in Buenos Aires, at least, once every year, and it is the perfect place to enjoy extraordinary games.
Consider the following sporting events in Buenos Aires, book your ticket in advance and enjoy some of the best sporting competitions Argentina has to offer:
Although Argentina has always produced phenomenal players, tennis has gained momentum in the last few years, mainly due to Juan Martín del Potro. The 6.4-feet-tall athlete won the 2009 US Open and is ranked as the 6th most important player according to the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP).
The Argentina Open is held each year during the month of February at the Buenos Aires Lawn Tennis Club. There are several tickets available for purchase each year. The cheapest one is worth ARS 110, while the most expensive ticket is worth more than ARS 3,000, and it is the ticket that allows you to watch the live finale. Courts are made of clay and the first prize of the tournament is worth USD 546,680.
Although there is no local championship as of 2014, the national rugby team participates each year on the Rugby Championship against absolutely remarkable teams such as Australia or New Zealand. If you are a rugby supporter, you might be able to buy a ticket for a game between Argentina’s team and another major team.
Argentina holds more than 10 different marathons throughout the year at La Pampa, Mendoza, San Juan, Rosario and Mar de Plata, among other locations. One of the most important marathons in the country is precisely held at the capital: the 42K Buenos Aires International Marathon.
This marathon has become one of the most popular sporting events in Buenos Aires, with more than 10,000 participants each edition. Additionally, it is the biggest sporting event of its kind in South America.
It takes place in spring (the northern hemisphere’s fall), when the weather is perfect for practicing activities in the outdoors. The route includes some landmarks and emblematic city sights such as the Obelisk, City Hall, Colón Theater, Casa Rosada (the presidential house), La Boca and Puerto Madero neighborhoods.
The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) certified its newest circuit last year. It now integrates the global marathon calendar (which gives runners many points). For this reason, it is a qualifying competition for the Olympics and worldwide championships.
Polo is a very popular sport among the country’s elite, mainly due to how expensive the sport is. Polo season, known as Triple corona is held between September and December, and it is comprised of 3 major tournaments: Tortuga Open, Hurlingham Open and the Palermo Open–Argentinian Championship. You can book tickets in advance for the 3 events.
The Superliga de Boxeo Argentina began in 2017; sponsored by major local and international boxing figures is the new stage where amateur boxers can start their career. Also, the Argentinian Boxing Federation (FAB) promotes several leagues in the country: the Metropolitan League, the Regional Juvenile Tournament, the Champions League as well as smaller matches.
Argentina has produced some truly remarkable boxers, which means that in any of these rings you might be able to watch a fight of a rising star and future box champion, an opportunity you will probably not want to miss.
Argentina has some of the best national teams nowadays in several subdivisions—sub 14, sub 16, sub 18, adult male and female teams—, all of which have local tournaments you can book tickets for. Also, national teams play international volleyball matches and championships, and several matches are actually played on Argentinian soil.
The national basketball championship is one of the most popular in Latin America. Local basketball teams play every year to become the best of the country and qualify for international championships. The basketball season is divided in two tournaments: Torneo Súper 20 (disputed from July until November) and La Liga (held between Novmber and and June).
Whichever sporting event you choose to watch, there are several must-see matches you should take advantage of while in Buenos Aires. Choose your favorite sport, book your ticket in advance and enjoy everything local sports have to offer!