The Chinatown of Buenos Aires is located within the Belgrano neighborhood, in a strip that some consider part of Belgrano C and others consider part of Bajo Belgrano. Its main axis is located on Arribeños Street, between Juramento and Olazábal (these 2 blocks have been pedestrianized since 2015) expanding through the transversal and parallel streets. It was defined by that name thanks to an immigration wave that occurred during the 1980s in which many Asian immigrant families settled.


These Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Taiwanese families quickly changed the face of the neighborhood with the opening of numerous Asian restaurants, street establishments and even one of the first Buddhist temples in the city, the Chong Kuan Temple, inaugurated in 1988. on 2175 Montañeses Street.


The main entrance to “Barrio Chino” is located on Arribeños and Juramento, near the access to the platforms of the Belgrano C train station on the Miter Line, where since 2009 an allegorical arch has been erected there to highlight its access to the neighborhood. . A few meters away are the Barrancas de Belgrano.


Unlike other Chinatowns, such as San Francisco, Buenos Aires emerged as a cultural and commercial area, combining the presence of Taiwanese community and religious institutions with candy stores that sought to attract train passengers.


Today, Chinatown is an important tourist spot in the City, with a great gastronomic, commercial and cultural offer, which has become not only a reference point for Chinese culture but for the entire Asian community in general.


This area became popular, especially for its traditional Chinese New Year celebration, which attracted a greater number of people year after year. However, not all residents were happy with the character that the neighborhood was taking, since those blocks, traditionally residential and quiet, had suddenly become an open-air shopping center, with the traffic and noise inconveniences that it caused. said transformation. At the same time, Asian merchants were the subject of numerous complaints from neighbors, especially due to the irregular conditions of several stores and the state of the merchandise they sold.


In 2006, the Urban Planning Secretariat of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires rejected a request presented by oriental merchants for that sector to be effectively considered a Chinatown. The official refusal established that this classification did not correspond to the true population structure of the neighborhood, which was made up of the vast majority of inhabitants who had nothing to do with the Asian world. According to the Planning Secretariat, it was an eastern commercial sector developed in only two blocks, similar to other commercial areas of the City.


In 2009, the construction of the access arch to the neighborhood (intersection of Arribeños and Juramento) was completed, measuring eleven meters high and eight meters wide, with marble, cement columns, carved stone lions and various elements representative of Chinese culture, such as coronation of a space that already had its marked cultural identity. This fact led to some complaints of alleged irregularities in the donation by the Chinese government and neighbors who did not want its construction.


Its area of influence is concentrated in a radius of four blocks, although commercial activity there is so intense that those few sidewalks are home to the largest number of Asian restaurants and supermarkets in the city, in addition to a couple of temples, candy stores and other businesses for the community.


Currently, most businesses are open every day, with the exception of some that close on Mondays. The main activities take place on weekends and holidays. There are also various manga and anime venues. And in recent years its fishmongers have also gained fame, due to the large number of varieties and prices.


During the Chinese New Year celebrations, the place becomes a grand pilgrimage. The festivities are organized by the Buenos Aires Chinatown Association, the Buenos Aires Chinatown Friends Association and the Argentine Chinese Cultural Association, with the support of the Tourism Entity of the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires and the CGP No. 13 .


Visitors enjoy the famous Dragon Dance and along the streets there are stalls where the Chinese-Taiwanese community exhibits aspects of their culture. There are also demonstrations of pen writing, stands on the Buddhist religion, Chinese astrology, Feng Shui, stands of Chinese language study institutes and traditional stands of typical cuisine of that country. Symbolizing the cultural integration between Argentina and China, there are tango shows with musicians and dancers from both countries. Without a doubt, a very picturesque and attractive spectacle for the public that is increasingly adept at oriental culture. And it has also become a great tourist attraction.


On the other side of the Access Arch of the Chino neighborhood, where the Belgrano C train tracks previously circulated, which were elevated, a new commercial and gastronomic promenade “Vía Viva” was inaugurated in 2023. This is located below the Belgrano C station of the Miter railway, extending parallel to Arribeños street, between Juramento and Sucre streets, which, populated by breweries, cafes and street food establishments, expanded the Chinese neighborhood and, above all, , they gave it a new life. It is estimated that in mid-2024 the walk will be completed, extending to Dorrego Avenue.


Another aspect that distinguishes “Vía Viva” from the traditional Chinatown is that it offers some of the services that can be found in a shopping center, but under the open air. Thus, the walk has public bathrooms and a modern camera monitoring system.