Culture and traditions

Traditions and customs of Argentina

Argentina has an interesting culture full of customs that its citizens continue to practice today. In addition, we can still find some indigenous ethnicities. In this article, we give you information about the most important traditions and celebrations of the country.

Below you have an index with all the points that we are going to deal with in this article.


In the Argentine culture we find numerous legends that have passed from generation to generation and have centuries of history. One of them is that of Salamanca, a cave where witches and demons are found. It is said that to find it it is necessary to know the correct word.

Another popular story is that of the origin of the name of Silver river. According to her, the first settler who found him was Juan Díaz Solís. Since then, it was said that this river, then known as Sweet sea, arrived at the Sierra de la Plata, where the empire of the White King was, full of precious metals.

It was Sebastián Caboto, from Venice, who made the first settlement there and sought silver, but did not find it. Since then, he stayed with the name of Silver river.


The tuff or qom they are an indigenous ethnic group that in Argentina has about 69,000 inhabitants located in Formosa, Chaco and Santa Fe. Formerly, they lived in small wooden houses with thatched roofs.

In summer they wore loincloths and in winter they were more warm with some clothes such as poncho. A typical ethnic craft is the onguaghachik, a bracelet that is made with animal teeth, seeds, shells, etc.

Also, the diaguitas They are found in Argentina and Chile, and today are a total of 31,700. Before the Inca invasion, they lived in small villages where there was a chief, the only man who could be polygamous, that is, have several women.

As for the Guarani, in Argentina, specifically in Jujuy, Salta, Ríos and Santa Fe, about 22,000 descendants live. They have rituals related to nature. For example, it is said that if a woman eats a double grain of millet, she will have a multiple pregnancy.

Gaucho customs

The gauchos are people who live in the plains, in the interior of Argentina, and lead a rural life, so they are farmers and ranchers. One of his best-known activities is dressage, which is that a rider endured on a foal between six and fifteen seconds.

A gaucho sport is the duck, in which eight riders divided into two teams try to put a ball with handles by a hoop. Formerly, it was played with a live duck tucked into a leather bag. For some years, he was prohibited for his rudeness. However, at one time the national sport was considered.

As for the traditional literature of the gauchos, the work stands out The gaucho Martín Fierro, by José Hernández, named the national book of Argentina. It is a publication written in verse.

The typical dress of the gauchos consists of black pants, a white shirt, a red scarf, a brown girdle, boots and a beret. You can know more about the traditional Argentine costumes in this article: Typical costumes of Argentina.


Mate is the quintessential drink of Argentina. It is an infusion of yerba mate, a South American plant that dries and grinds. This is not taken alone, but is usually done in a group.

The person who feeds the mate, that is, who throws hot water, is called primer. Each time a person takes it, the called container passes porongo to the person on his right.

Preparing it is a ritual that must be done correctly so that the bitter taste characteristic of mate. For example, the water should be between 70 and 90 ° C. The instrument used to sip is called light bulb And it's metal.

Feeding Habits

Argentines are big consumers of beef, so one of their typical foods is roast. This is usually prepared on Sundays or on holidays. The grills should be several hours on fire. The dressing that is usually put to meat is chimichurri, prepared with these ingredients:

  • Parsley
  • Garlic
  • Oregano
  • Onion
  • Chilli
  • Oil and vinegar

Likewise, the caramel, which is made with milk, sugar and vanilla. It is usually the filling of some sweets such as alfajores. Another gastronomic tradition of Argentina is to eat gnocchi on the 29th of each month. It is typical to put money under this dish to attract good luck and fortune.

If you want to know more about the culinary tradition of Argentina, we recommend this article: Typical dishes of Argentina.

Traditionally, in Argentina the Christmas tree is laid on December 8, Immaculate Conception Day. It should be remembered that this country is in the southern hemisphere, so during these holidays it is summer.

To welcome the New Year, in Ciudad de la Plata it is typical to create dolls called Old year that during the New Year's Eve they burn. You can find other Christmas customs in this article: Christmas traditions in Argentina.


One of the most important holidays in the country takes place on July 9, Independence Day of the Argentine Republic. This day marks the signing of the Declaration of Independence that took place in 1816.

Likewise, the most outstanding carnival is that of Corrientes, named National Capital of Carnival. It has been celebrated since the 19th century and, in it, the troupes compete and show their costumes of a specific theme. The events are organized in the corsodrome, an enclosure that has a capacity of 30,000 people.

On the other hand, in Cosquín, Córdoba, the National Folklore Festival of Cosquín is celebrated at the end of January, the most important in the whole State. This one lasts nine nights.

Social customs

Argentines usually speak directly and maintain close contact with the other person. When greeting each other, unless it is a formal situation, it is common to kiss the cheek. However, in Current it is typical to give two.

People do not give much importance to unpunctuality and, when they speak, they tend to gesture a lot. On the other hand, in restaurants, it is typical to tip, but you should leave bills, not coins. Argentina's favorite sport is football.

Typical dances

The best known dance in Argentina is the tango. This has its origin in Buenos Aires, in the nineteenth century and, initially, was practiced by the marginal classes in premises and brothels.

A typical dance of the interior is the cat, which is danced as a couple. In it, the man tries to woo the woman with the zapateado. Its history began in Peru in the 19th century.

Also, malambo has been practiced in La Pampa since the 17th century. Only men dance, who compete to demonstrate their skills. There are two styles: the southern one, softer, and the northern one, more agile.

Reading habits

The majority of the population of Argentina considers reading as a daily habit. As for children, 70% read regularly. One of the most prominent authors in the country is Jose Luis Borges. Also, Quino is known for the comic series called Mafalda.


There is a custom of weddings in Argentina that can result weird For people from other countries. This consists of putting ribbons on the banquet cake. Each single woman must pull one of these tapes, because at the end of one of them there is a ring. Whoever finds it, will be the next to marry.


The most important birthday party for Argentine girls is that of 15 years, since it is considered that from this age they become adult women.

To celebrate this fact, a great celebration is organized in which the quinceañera, as the girl who turns years is called, wears a great dress and goes makeup and hairstyle for the occasion.

Before the important day, the birthday girl usually has a professional photo session. In addition, during the celebration there is also a photographer. On the other hand, it is typical for the girl to dance a waltz with her father.

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Finally, we have selected the previous and next article of the block "Prepare the trip"so you can continue reading:

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