In the summer of 2014, I spent 6 weeks in Argentina with the UGA en Buenos Aires study abroad program. I took one Spanish literature class at la Universidad de Palermo and one hybrid class/internship with an Argentine criminal defense lawyer.
The trip was one of the most incredible experiences of my life. The classes and internship took a considerable but very reasonable amount of time. My Spanish-speaking skills improved tremendously over the time I spent there and I learned a lot of new vocabulary you simply don't find in textbooks.
The included travel we did was stupendous. We toured the city of Buenos Aires and almost all of its unique boroughs, allowing us to be exposed to their culture in the touristy areas as well as the homes we lived in - not to mention at the university or in the bars (if you were one in the group that went out as often as I did).
On top of Buenos Aires, we traveled to visit the famous Mendoza wine region and to see the Iguazu Cataracts. Mendoza had some of the most beautiful landscapes I've ever seen - luscious grape vines growing with frost-tipped mountains looming in the background. Iguazu was a fantastic experience as well. The Iguazu Cataracts are considered a new natural wonder of the world and were actually flooding when we visited - I had the unique privilege of seeing this tremendous set of waterfalls when they were flowing at 40 (FORTY) times their normal volume. The flow was so strong that it destroyed some of the tourist footbridges and paths on the site.
The housing was solid. I lived in the apartment of an Argentine mother and her daughter on the 3700 block of Avenida Rivadavia along with another UGA student. They cooked plenty (and I mean plenty) of food for us at dinner and were overall very hospitable and accommodating. The location was somewhat less convenient than the locations where all the other UGA students were - we were in the south part of the Al Magro neighborhood/borough while most of the other students were in Palermo or Recoleta (which were much closer to the University). However, there was a very affordable public transit system that was usually pretty reliable. When that failed, you could still get almost anywhere within a couple miles via taxi for under $10.
The food was fantastic. I had several of the best meals of my life in Argentina. The four main foods there (or at least the four main foods I ate while there) were steak, pasta, pizza, and empanadas. Argentina has strong cultural ties to Italy and I had outstanding pizza while there - my personal favorite was from "El Cuartito." Along with the Italian food, Argentina has a massive dairy industry and you can buy incredible cow-based dinners there for $10-15 - often marked by the words "parrillada," meaning grilled. A parrillada dinner typically includes 6 or 7 different kinds of meat - 4 or 5 of which were always tremendous. The other 2 or 3 were usually blood sausage or some sort of cow innard that I wasn't too interested in eating. Every time I ate pasta there, my mouth couldn't believe the incredible smells and flavors flowing forth from what had always been a rather boring meal back home. Finally, the empanadas were my savior on that trip more than once. If in a rush to get to class, you could stop into a cafe and pick up a couple empanadas for a buck or two each. Most of the time, empanadas were delicious little pockets of happiness. The times that they weren't as great were when they were bought from the sketchier/lower-quality cafes or restaurants (although some of those had surprisingly impressive ones).
The base cost was about $5000, with airfare not included (cost me roughly $1500 buying round trip tickets a few months in advance). Over the 6 weeks, I spent probably an additional $1500 (the exchange rate was ~11 pesos to the dollar while I was there) for food, souvenirs, nightlife, etc. A more frugal person than I could have easily survived on just 500-600 for food, but I partook in the vivid nightlife of Buenos Aires several times a week and consequently squandered a small fortune in the city's bars.
I could talk about the trip for hours on end, but I have a test to study for and shouldn't procrastinate too much longer. If you have any questions, you're more than welcome to get in touch with me through this website.