The Mataderos Market should be on your bucket list for visiting Buenos Aires if you want an authentic experience of a traditional Argentine market.
Feria de Mataderos, as the market is called in Spanish, offers a wide variety of traditional Argentine crafts and performances of folkloric dances.
The Mataderos Market is on Sundays and public holidays during the Argentine Spring (April to December).
Let’s dive into the best things to do and see at Feria de Mataderos – and what to expect from your visit!
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A Complete Guide on How to Visit the Mataderos Market in Buenos Aires
The History of Argentina’s Cowboys, the Gauchos
The Argentine gaucho culture is an ingrained part of the history behind the Mataderos Feria.
Gauchos are Argentine cowboys or horsemen. Today the gauchos are a strong folk symbol in Argentine culture.
The gauchos are known to live in the Argentine lowlands called the Pampas. Here they rose cattle and horses on the fertile lowlands.
Another popular place to visit to experience Argentina’s Guacho culture is San Antonio de Areco.
The name of the neighborhood of the market, Mataderos, translates in English to slaughterhouses.
Back in the day, the Mataderos neighborhood was the gauchos’ first stop within the borders of the City of Buenos Aires.
The gauchos would stop to trade their cattle at the Livestock Market located in Mataderos. The old Livestock Market is actually located just opposite the current Mataderos Market.
What to Do at the Mataderos Market
Explore Local Handcraft and Food at the Mataderos Market
The Mataderos Market as you see it today was established in 1986. The idea was to promote different regional Argentine traditions and cuisines.
On the market, you can find different stands with handcrafts and local cuisine.
You can buy everything from olive oil from Mendoza to a handmade bag from La Pampa.
You also have different food stands that sell Argentine regional specialties such as empanadas, asado, tamales, and locro.
Compared to the local Sunday Market in San Telmo, the Mataderos Market has a less touristic feeling to it. And it also attracts a lot of locals.
The Mataderos Market was closed for a long time during Argentina’s strict COVID lockdown. But now the Mataderos Market is open again!
Folklore Dance at Feria de Mataderos
In the center of the Mataderos Market, there is a huge stage with a small square in front. People gather here to dance traditional folkloric dances.
Some people come in their normal street clothes, while others has traditional Argentine costumes on.
This definitely makes a good base for some amazing photos!
I visited Feria de Mataderos back in December 2019, before COVID and the lockdown hit.
After the show, we ended up chatting with one of the “gauchos”. He told us that he and his wife had been coming to the market for years just to dance.
They were both completely dressed up in traditional costumes. In their daily life, they were lawyers.
When to Visit the Mataderos Market
The Mataderos Market is open exclusively from April to December on Sundays and public holidays from 11 am to the evening.
The market might get canceled on rainy days.
You can check out the Feria de Mataderos’ Facebook page (in Spanish) for updates or cancelations.
How to Get to the Mataderos Market
The neighborhood of Mataderos is located on the western edge between the City of Buenos Aires and the Province of Buenos Aires.
Depending on the form of transportation that you use, it might take a bit of time to get there.
The official location of the Mataderos Market is Avenida Lisandro de la Torre and Avenida De los Corrales. The corner of these two streets corresponds to the big stage in the middle of the market. However, the market stretches along both these streets which are closed off for cars.
With a taxi or an Uber, it shouldn’t take more than 30-45 minutes from the city center or the Palermo neighborhood. However, with public transportation, it can easily take an hour or more.
If you take public transportation to Mataderos, the bus will stop just a couple of blocks away from the market. Put in the coordinates of the streets above and follow the instructions on your phone, and you will get to the right place.
Would you add Feria de Mataderos to your bucket list for Buenos Aires? Or have you maybe already visited? Share your thoughts and knowledge below!
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