La Boca is a neighborhood in the Argentine capital, Buenos Aires. The area retains a strong European flavor, with many of its early settlers originating from the Italian city of Genoa. Home for Boca Juniors football team, La Bombonera Stadium, La Boca has even more attractions to offer. Let’s check them! 🙂
Visiting La Boca will transport you into the infectious energy of South American lifestyle. Here’s our guide to the best things to see and do in this vibrant neighborhood.
La Boca – Caminito
It’s a narrow alley flanked by brightly painted zinc shacks that evoke the district’s early immigrant days. In El Caminito is where tango artists perform and tango-related memorabilia is sold. Caminito, meaning ‘little walkway’, is instagrammable & popular destination for tourists with its colourful houses and pedestrian street. Basically we can say it’s a street museum and very traditional alley in La Boca.
There are a handful of handcraft stalls lining the street, so make sure you have enough time for some souvenir shopping. Colorful shanty houses line each side of the street. Everything is so bright, happy, and full of music and colors, tango dancers and locals selling everything that a tourist might be interested in. Attention: prices are higher given that it’s s a touristy area. Also, take extra care with your belongings. However, we never felt unsafe.
La Bombonera Stadium in La Boca
Former stomping ground of football player Diego Maradona (reminding us of his “hand of God”), La Bombonera, translating to ‘cosy little space’, turns into a cauldron of noise on match days. It’s one of the most popular football stadiums in South America. For anyone with a passion for football there’s a worth visiting museum: the Museo de la Pasión Boquense.
What else is there in La Boca?
Plenty of restaurants and shops everywhere! Other attractions include the La Ribera theatre, Italian taverns, and many tango clubs. Besides, there’s the Modern art museum Fundación Proa which has temporary exhibits and views of the old docks. The actual area visited by tourists is only a few blocks long and has been built up for tourism. Outside this touristy area, it’s a fairly poor neighborhood that has had many regular occurrences of petty crimes reported.
I wish we had taken a guided walking tour to enjoy our visit properly to La Boca but we didn’t have time to do it. If you’re planning your visit in advance, we highly recommend the walking tour as it’s not the safest area and it’s easy to turn a corner and get lost. Don’t go in the early mornings, but as long as you are around other people, it’s fun and safe.
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Have you visited La Boca before? What else would you recommend? If you haven’t been there yet, would you include it in your itinerary for Buenos Aires? 🙂
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