It would be simpler if you were to just declare it as a List - does it have to be an ArrayList?

List<String> places = Arrays.asList("Buenos Aires", "Córdoba", "La Plata");

Or if you have only one element:

List<String> places = Collections.singletonList("Buenos Aires");

This would mean that places is immutable (trying to change it will cause an UnsupportedOperationException exception to be thrown).

To make a mutable list that is a concrete ArrayList you can create an ArrayList from the immutable list:

ArrayList<String> places = new ArrayList<>(Arrays.asList("Buenos Aires", "Córdoba", "La Plata"));