After a yoga session, breakfast of home baked bread and oat muesli with cinnamon, well-needed time outside in the sunshine, lunch, and a bit of chilling at home, I listened to Buenos Aires – Palermo by MPTours, creators of some of the most affordable MP3 audio tours online.
Thanks to co-founder Paul Iribarne, I received two complimentary audio tours, Buenos Aires – Palermo and Rome – Trastevere, in late 2008. At first I wanted to listen once I had visited these two neighborhoods in person but since I don’t yet know when, I rather share this with you today.
Steven and Paul, two former college roommates, assembled a dream team of professional tour guides, historians, talented writers and actors, local musicians, award-winning sound engineers, and hip web designers to fulfil their vision. The result speaks for itself – high quality, fascinating MP3 tours available in multiple languages for people all over the world. Online, rental, or CD.
Made for independent travelers who want be immersed in new places, MPTours aims to provide touring experiences that will transport you into the heart of a city and appeal to all five senses. You only need an MP3 player or an iPod (and preferably comfortable shoes). No unnecessary schedules, boring tour guides, or waiting for others. You set the pace and decide what, where, and when. If you notice a place that isn’t included in the itinerary, just press pause and return whenever you feel like it.
Each MPTour cost $ 14.99. Apart from the MP3 files, you will receive a printable PDF map that highlights points of interest. To get a better grasp of the city, make sure to read the CITY INFO section before taking a tour.
Buenos Aires – Palermo
One of legendary writer Jorge Luis Borges’ celebrated areas – designer stores, high-class restaurants, superb architecture and bohemian flavor have made Palermo one of the most eclectic and popular microcosms in Buenos Aires.
I instantly feel a liking to Marina, the narrator of Buenos Aires – Palermo, who has lived in the neighborhood since she was a little girl. She calls herself a “pioneer of the new Palermo” and combines travel tips with tales from her childhood (including where she had her first kiss at age 12 and an anecdote involving her grandparents). This mixture of personal stories and travel suggestions works very well, and the street sounds and relaxing background music further add to the quality of the tour. It consists of 12 tracks and shows you interesting aspects of Buenos Aires’ largest neighborhood. Other Buenos Aires tours include Recoleta and San Telmo.
Rome – Trastevere
Discover the neighborhood locals call the “real Rome,” medieval Trastevere, where the rich and powerful once built luxury villas on the Tiber, and where today’s savvy Romans now come to shop, to eat and to play.
Nina, the narrator of Rome – Trastevere, talks a bit faster than Marina and concentrates more on the sights but the two tours offer the same focus on quality and totally make me want to visit Buenos Aires and Rome to follow the tours on location. I would especially like to admire Nina’s favorite view in Trastevere.
The full San Francisco tour of every neighborhood and landmark in the city also sounds appealing. And, whenever I travel to London, I look forward to experience the London audio tours of Brixton, King’s Road, Camden Town, Soho and Brick Lane. But for now, dinner and hopefully a good movie with my housemates.
If you want to learn more about MPTours, or purchase a tour, visit MP3 Audio Walking Tours of Buenos Aires, Rome, London and San Francisco.