Vijay and I have finally made it to Buenos Aires after a very long journey indeed. It took over twenty four hours, but it was a pleasure to fly with Turkish Airlines. We set off from different airports - Vijay from Birmingham and myself from Gatwick - and met up in Istanbul.
I had no problems getting my stuff on the plane. I only had a one way ticket, but no questions were asked about having a ticket for onward travel from Argentina. The bike only cost €90 to take on as checked luggage (€30 for the first leg and €60 for the second leg). They were initial going to charge me €120 until I corrected them on the prices. I didn't come anywhere near my maximum luggage allowance, which was two bags of up to 23kg each.
After a three and a half hour to flight we had an incredibly long overnight layover in Istanbul airport. I think it was about ten hours. It felt like forever and neither of us managed to get any decent rest. Fortunately on the second leg of the flight we were booked into "comfort class" which meant that we got incredibly spacious seats so that made up for the layover. Check out the leg space below.
The Sahara desert.
First sight of South America - Brazil. It was a comfortable ten hour flight to Sao Paulo, where the plane stopped for an hour or two as a load of passengers got on and off and the flight crew changed. The food on Turkish Airlines was far better than most airlines that I've travelled with. Next stop Buenos Aires! We descended down towards the city in a celestial electrical storm with an unhealthy serving of turbulence on the side. The lightning show was amazing although I was slightly worried that I might not actually get to ride my bike in South America! Fortunately we didn't plummet into the ocean.
The bike arrived in one piece along with the rest of our luggage. Vijay negotiated our way through immigration smoothly and booked 4 nights in the Palacio Chic Hotel in Palermo. As we're going to be living in tents for the next few months, we were more than willing to drop a few dollars on a decent hotel. We ordered a taxi large enough to carry all of our gear for $50 USD. It's quite a journey to Palermo from Ministro Pistarini International Airport so I don't think it was bad value.
This is the view from our balcony. That's as much of the city as I have seen so far. Why? Because I'm just getting up. So that's enough typing for now. Time to do some exploring.