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14 Things to KNOW Before Visiting La Boca in Buenos Aires

14 Things to KNOW Before Visiting La Boca in Buenos Aires

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With its colorful houses, tango dancers, and lively atmosphere, it’s hard not to fall in love with La Boca. 

This neighborhood is where many immigrants settled on arrival in Argentina in the late 19th and 20th centuries. With hundreds of years of history and culture, it’s no wonder this neighborhood is a highlight of sightseeing tours of Buenos Aires.

La Boca is our favorite part of Buenos Aires, and visiting is a must-do when you’re in the city. Strolling down the famous Caminito alley, you’ll see tango shows and artisans alongside traditional bars and restaurants. It’s also the birthplace of tango and the home of Boca Jrs, which is arguably Buenos Aires’ most beloved soccer team (unless, of course, you’re talking to a River Plate fan!).

You really can’t miss La Boca, even if you’re only in Buenos Aires for a few days. But given this historically poor neighborhood’s long history of social problems, some travelers are nervous about visiting. However, this guide is here to tell you everything you need to know about visiting La Boca safely. Keep reading to learn how to get there, what to do, where to eat, and more! 

Don’t have time to read the full article? La Boca is a must-visit neighborhood in Buenos Aires. It’s safe to visit during the day when you can stroll down colorful alleyways, watch tango dancers, and eat delicious choripán. To learn even more, we recommend this half-day bike tour, which takes you through the city center as well as to El Caminito and La Bombonera Stadium.

1. About La Boca

Bailey sits on the colorful streets of La Boca, Buenos Aires
A colorful building in La Boca, Buenos Aires

La Boca dates back to the 1870s when working-class immigrants from Europe and Asia began to arrive in Argentina. La Boca was right next to the old port where many people arrived, and so it’s no surprise that a settlement sprang up here. 

Landlords began renting their houses out to dozens of immigrants at a time, and corrugated iron houses called conventillos began to spring up all over the area, usually made with leftover dockyard materials. These homes had only basic facilities, and families had to sleep in shifts because there wasn’t enough room for everyone to have their own beds. 

Lots of the immigrants in La Boca were from Spain and Italy, which led to the birth of lunfardo, a type of slang that is a mixture of the two languages. Many residents of La Boca also hailed from Asia and even Africa, and the melting pot of cultures in the area also led to the birth of the tango. In fact, it’s said that brothels in La Boca were so overrun that the tango was originally invited to keep patrons amused while they waited in line! Whether or not that’s true, there’s no denying the cultural significance and popularity of tango today. And in La Boca, you’ll often see dancers performing in the streets for tourists. 

La Boca is also famed for its colorful houses. The story goes that fishermen and shipyard workers used to use leftover paint to decorate their conventillos. In the 1930s and 1940s, one of La Boca’s main streets, El Caminito, was eventually abandoned until a local artist, Quinquela Martín, had the idea to repaint it and turn it into an outdoor museum. Today, El Caminito is the main tourist walking street in La Boca, where you’ll find lots of bars, restaurants, and artists selling their wares. 

There’s such a great atmosphere here, which is why we loved visiting so much, and the people are so friendly. It’s definitely one of the most interesting areas to visit in the city, and we recommend checking it out even if you only have one day to spend in Buenos Aires. It was actually one of our highlights of Argentina as a whole. 

2. Where is La Boca?

Statues on a colorful balcony in the Boca neighborhood in Buenos Aires, Argentina
Statues on a colorful balcony in the Boca neighborhood in Buenos Aires, Argentina

La Boca means “the mouth” in Spanish, which indicates this neighborhood’s location near the mouth of the Matanza River. It’s very close to the city docks, and it’s also within walking distance of San Telmo which is the popular Bohemian neighborhood in Buenos Aires. 

La Boca is 3.2 kilometers (2 miles) south of Puerto Madero, a riverside neighborhood that’s part of the city’s CBD, and 2.3 kilometers (1.5 miles) south of San Telmo. Meanwhile, it’s around 13 kilometers (8 miles) from Palermo, which is Buenos Aires’ trendy nightlife hub. 

3. How to get to La Boca?

A statue in the Boca neighborhood in Buenos Aires, Argentina
A famous street in the Boca neighborhood
Colorful buildins in the Boca neighborhood in Buenos Aires, Argentina

The best way to get to La Boca depends on where you’re staying in Buenos Aires. There’s no subway station in La Boca, but you can walk from certain neighborhoods or take an Uber, which shouldn’t cost you more than $3 USD each way.  

From San Telmo

San Telmo is a popular place for tourists to stay in Buenos Aires, thanks to its cool, Bohemian feel. You can walk from San Telmo to La Boca in 25 minutes, or it’s about a 10-minute Uber ride which should cost around $2 USD. It’s perfectly safe to walk between the two during the day if you want to, and it’s a nice route that takes you through two different parks. 

From Palermo

Palermo is another popular place to stay, especially if you prefer AirBnbs to hotels. The only really convenient way to get from Palermo to La Boca is to take an Uber, which should cost around $5 USD. We do recommend combining a visit to La Boca with a visit to San Telmo, though, since the two areas are so close together. 

From Puerto Madero

Lots of the best hotels in Buenos Aires are in Puerto Madero. The best way to get to La Boca from here is to take an Uber, which will take just over 10 minutes. 

You can also technically walk to La Boca in around 30 minutes. However, we don’t recommend walking the whole way, since you’d have to cross a highway which isn’t very safe to do.

4. What are the best things to do in La Boca?

El Caminito street in La Boca, Buenos Aires
El Caminito street in La Boca, Buenos Aires

Explore El Caminito

El Caminito is the most famous street in La Boca. It was once a bustling street that ran parallel to a railway line, and hundreds of families lived here in conventillos. However, when the railway line was closed, El Caminito was gradually abandoned until the famous Argentine painter Quinquela Martín decided to revive the street in the 1950s. 

Quinquela Martín grew up in an orphanage in La Boca in the 1890s and 1900s, and by the 1920s, he was a celebrated artist who traveled the world to exhibit his work. He was also committed to philanthropic work in La Boca, and he’s a big part of why this neighborhood is such a popular tourist attraction. 

Quinquela Martín turned El Camino into a street museum, and now it’s full of art stalls, restaurants, and bars that offer tango shows to visitors. You should definitely walk up and down this street and just get a feel for the atmosphere in this lively part of the city. 

We took hundreds of photos of the colorful houses along here, and you can also pay to take photos with tango dancers. It’s also nice to just visit one of the many bars to grab a beer and watch all the comings and goings of El Caminito. 

Watch tango

La Boca is the birthplace of tango, so there’s really no better place to watch the famous dance! Lots of the bars and restaurants have regular, short tango performances outside that you can watch, and you can also see dancers in action just walking up and down El Caminito. We saw tons of dancers when we went! 

Meanwhile, if you’re hungry enough for a sit-down meal, you can also head to Caminito Tango Show for food, music, and dancing all day long! It’s open every day from 11 am – 7 pm, but the ideal time to visit is in the afternoon.

Visit the Benito Quinquela Martín Museum

Benito Quinquela Martín is not only famous for transforming El Caminito into the vibrant outdoor museum that it is today but he’s also celebrated for his vivid oil paintings of La Boca. You can visit the museum dedicated to him to see his depictions of what life in La Boca was like in the 20th century. It’s the largest collection of Quinquela Martín’s work anywhere in the world. Works by several other prominent Argentine artists are displayed here, too. 

We found that learning about Quinquela Martín actually gave us a lot more insight into La Boca in general, so we definitely recommend a visit to this museum. It’s open Tuesday through Sunday from 11:15 am until 6 pm, and entry costs around $2 USD per person. 

Shop

La Boca is a great place to pick up souvenirs for your Buenos Aires trip. You’ll find lots of artists selling paintings, keyrings, and the like along El Caminito. There are also bigger souvenir shops that sell everything from fridge magnets to beautiful leather jackets (which really tempted me!). In fact, we found that La Boca had the best souvenirs in the city, which is probably because it’s so popular with tourists.

La Bombonera Football Stadium
La Bombonera Football Stadium!

Visit La Bombonera Stadium 

La Bombonera is the home of Boca Jrs, the team that the legendary Maradona once played for. And trust us, soccer players are like gods in Argentina – you’ll see statues of Messi everywhere you go! 

The name “La Bombonera” means “the chocolate box”, which stems from its unusual shape. It’s one of the most iconic stadiums in the world, and some really famous names have performed here, including Elton John, Lenny Kravitz, and the Backstreet Boys (yes, really!).

You can tour the stadium and visit the museum inside for around $5 USD, and it’s best to just buy tickets on the day because the online booking system leaves a lot to be desired. Or, if you want to see La Bombonera with a guide and even add on a visit to the rival River Plate Stadium, this stadium tour is your best bet. You’ll get a behind-the-scenes look at La Bombonera including a visit to the museum inside.

Eat choripán

Choripán is an Argentine hot dog that’s made with chorizo and chimichurri. It’s so delicious and there are lots of street food stalls serving up sandwiches along and around El Caminito. Plus, it’s a super cheap and filling lunch! 

Join a pre-game party

If you’re in Buenos Aires when Boca Jrs are playing a match at La Bombonera, it’s really fun to head there and check out the pregame atmosphere. 

It’s quite difficult for foreigners to get tickets to the games, but the party beforehand is actually the best part. There’s lots of music, dancing, food, and drinks, and locals even open their homes to the public in case you need to use the restroom! The atmosphere is just incredible. 

Related Read: if you have enough time, we highly recommend visiting Iguazu Falls from Buenos Aires. You’ll see some of the most spectacular waterfalls – and you can even visit on a day trip!

5. What are the best tours to La Boca?

Colorful window in La Boca, Argentina
La Boca is a photographer’s dream!

La Boca and City Center Bike Tour

On this half-day bike tour, you’ll explore the southern parts of Buenos Aires, including Puerto Madero, San Telmo, and of course, La Boca. Your guide will teach you all about the fascinating history of this neighborhood, and there are lots of stops to take photos along the way.

And trust us, you’ll find yourself getting very snap-happy in La Boca because it’s just so colorful!

Buenos Aires is a fairly flat city, so biking won’t be super strenuous. It’s more about taking in the sights and getting a feel for each neighborhood.

Of course, you’ll stop at La Bombonera and Caminito to learn more about La Boca. However, I also loved riding through the Reserva Ecologica, which is a protected natural area with loads of trees and birds. It felt like a nice contrast from the neighborhoods, and it sits just across the river.

The tour ends in Plaza de Mayo, which is where you’ll find important buildings like Casa Rosada and the Metropolitan Cathedral. You can hit many cultural sights in one morning, so it’s perfect if you want to maximize your time here.

You need to meet your group at the bike rental shop at 9:30 am, and the tour lasts around 4 hours. The $35 USD price covers your bike, helmet, and guide. Overall, it’s a great way to explore some of Buenos Aires’ most vibrant and interesting areas. 

You can check availability and book your Buenos Aires bike tour right here.

Boca Juniors and River Plate Museums Tour

Buenos Aires has two major soccer teams, and learning about the long-standing feud between them is super interesting (even if you’re not a huge soccer fan!). This tour will take you through both stadiums so that you can learn about the clubs, their famous players, and how soccer has shaped the city of Buenos Aires itself. You’ll get to take lots of photos and see trophies, jerseys, and other artifacts. 

The rivalry between Boca Juniors and River Plate is legendary, and I was fascinated to hear the details. We’re not kidding when we say it’s fierce, either – only home fans can attend games at each stadium because otherwise too many fights break out. 

Fighting isn’t just for the fans, either. The Superclasico match between the two teams in May 2023 ended up in a huge, 20-minute brawl between the players right on the pitch! 

The two teams are both super famous in Buenos Aires, and each stadium has a museum where you can learn more about the clubs and their history. You’ll get to visit both to delve even deeper into their histories. We learned that the Boca Jrs is historically a working-class team, while River Plate is from the wealthier barrio of Belgrano.

The combo tour costs $225 USD if you’re booking for two or more people and it visits both stadiums and museums with a local guide. You can also choose to see just one of the two stadiums if you’re hoping to save money. However, exploring both really gives you a full picture of the Buenos Aires soccer scene!

Prices include transport between La Bombonera and El Monumental, but it doesn’t include hotel pickup. The tour starts and ends at a meeting point in San Telmo, which is ideal if you’re staying nearby. You can arrange the meeting time with your guide and tours last between 3-5 hours.

For a window into Buenos Aires soccer culture, book this tour in advance. It’s a popular one and does sell out!

Colorful doors and walls in the trendy area of La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina
So colorful!

Buenos Aires Bike Tour: San Telmo and La Boca Districts

This bicycle tour focuses on San Telmo and La Boca, with a visit to the Plaza de Mayo as well. Over the course of 4 hours, you’ll cycle around the two neighborhoods, see lots of street art, and have plenty of time to explore El Caminito. You’ll leave with a solid understanding of what each neighborhood is all about.

Your guide will also teach you all about the history of these two historic neighborhoods, which is super interesting. Both have faced some social problems over the years, and it’s interesting to learn how they turned into the popular and vibrant areas they are today.

One of my highlights of this tour was passing by Plaza Dorrego, a center full of bars, cafes, and antique stores. This was one of those spots we made a note to return to for their Sunday market. I love taking bike tours shortly after arriving in the city – you get an idea of where you’d like to visit again! Plus, our guide had some great recommendations for places to eat and drink.

You’ll need to meet your group at La Bicicleta Naranja by 1:45 pm. The tour costs $61 USD per person, including your bike, helmet, and guide. You also get free bottled water along the way, which is super handy as it can get very hot in Buenos Aires during the summer.

We also like that it’s a small group tour and that you can request an electric bike. This is ideal if you have a health condition that makes riding a regular bicycle too difficult for long periods of time.

To explore San Telmo and La Boca, you can secure your spot on this bike tour here.

Buenos Aires Small-Group City Tour

We loved this small group city tour! It was so informative, and although it covers the whole of Buenos Aires, we got some free time to spend in La Boca. It was enough time to explore El Caminito, grab some souvenirs, and eat choripán. We also drove past La Bombonera on our way to the Plaza de Mayo. 

This tour is great if you want to combine La Boca with other top Buenos Aires sites. After La Boca, you’ll pass by Puerto Madero, Teatro Colon, Retiro, and through the upscale neighborhood of Recoleta.

The last stop is the Recoleta Cemetery. At this point, you can choose to get the return transportation or break off from your group and tour the cemetery independently. If you have the time, I’d highly recommend paying the $5 USD to walk this unique labyrinth of coffins and crypts that house some of Argentina’s most famous celebrities (including Eva Peron).  

This is a 3-hour tour with options to go in the morning or the afternoon. It costs $29 USD, which covers your friendly guide and all transportation from central hotels ($5 USD extra if you’re coming from the port). We found it to be a good value for money considering everything you see. It gave us a nice overview of the city, and it’s a great way to visit La Boca if you don’t have a ton of time in Buenos Aires.

To see the top Buenos Aires attractions in a short amount of time, book this tour online today

Buenos Aires Like a Local Private Tour

For anyone looking to visit La Boca on a private tour, this is a fantastic choice.

You’ll be driven around by a super friendly local guide. You can cover all of the main highlights. However, since this is a private tour, you get to choose which places you want to visit and where you want to spend the most time. 

With this tour, there’s really no need to worry that you’ll have to rush through La Boca. You have time to properly appreciate it because you can spend as long as you like here! Soak up the intensity of the tango performers, savor that choripán, or really embrace your inner photographer on these colorful streets.

You can choose which highlights you most want to visit, and since it’s a private tour, you get 100% of your guide’s attention. We find that you always learn more on a private tour. 

The price of the tour per adult depends on how many people you have. For two adults, it costs $150 USD each, while it’s $120 USD per person for a group of 5. It lasts for 4 hours, and you can even bring luggage and add airport drop-off at the end for an extra fee. This could be a very convenient way of squeezing every last second out of your time in Buenos Aires.

For a personalized experience, reserve your private Buenos Aires tour right here.

Why We Book Tours with Viator

Viator is a trusted online booking system for tours around the world! We almost always book our tours using Viator for a couple of reasons:

  • Free cancellation on most tours – Most of the tours on Viator allow you to cancel and get a full refund up to 24 hours in advance. This is handy in case plans change, or if booking an outdoor activity, the weather forecast is looking grim.
  • Reserve now and pay later – You can secure your spot on some of the most popular tours well in advance and not pay until closer to the day of the tour.
  • Pay in your chosen currency – Avoid costly international transaction fees by choosing to pay in your home currency.
  • Peace of mind – When booking with tour operators you find in person on the street or in small booking offices, you are often promised one thing and given another. This online platform holds tour operators accountable with a written description of inclusions as well as the opportunity for customers to leave reviews.

Check out the Viator website here! Or, read our complete Viator review to learn more about what we think about Viator.

6. Where are the best places to eat in La Boca?

El Gran Paraiso La Boca
Photo credit: El Gran Paraiso
Encuentro Nativo Resto La Boca
Photo credit: Encuentro Nativo Resto

El Gran Paraiso

What we love about El Gran Paraiso is that it’s housed inside one of the colorful conventillos located just off of El Caminito. It also has a really nice courtyard out back, and the menu includes lots of delicious Argentine favorites, like steak, ribs, and choripán. They also have a good selection of local Malbec, and even though this restaurant attracts a lot of tourists, you’ll see plenty of locals eating here, too. They don’t charge tourist prices, either!

Encuentro Nativo

This is another restaurant located inside a conventillo. We love its lively atmosphere and the fact that there’s a small stage in the outdoor seating area where singers and tango dancers often perform. Like most restaurants in the area, they offer steak, but you can also get some nice, cheesy sandwiches or yummy empanadas if you want a lighter meal. They’re open every day from 10 am – 12 am, but we recommend visiting La Boca during daylight hours.

La Pana Rock

La Pana Rock is a cute little bakery/bar where you can find empanadas, waffles, cakes, and pastries – so basically, it’s carb heaven. It’s a good place to grab a coffee and people watch, or even try the famous fernet and Coke if you’re in the mood for something stronger. It’s very bright and colorful inside, and the staff are super friendly. They’re open most days from 7 am – 7 pm, so don’t hesitate to pop in for a snack!

Sorrento 

Argentina is home to some seriously amazing ice cream. So if you’re in La Boca on a warm day, make sure to stop at Sorrento and grab a cone or a tub. Portions in Buenos Aires are very generous, so you might want to consider sharing if you get a tub (or not, because the ice cream is delicious!). 

There are tons of decadent flavors on offer at Sorrento. When we went, we tried chocolate brownie and bubblegum sprinkle – both were awesome but completely different. But when in Buenos Aires, you really can’t go wrong with dulce de leche!

Las Gemelas

Las Gemelas is one of the best places to grab choripán in La Boca (and wash it down with a cold Quilmes beer!). The staff is really friendly, and we found that this was a great place to sit and people-watch. It feels super authentic, and it’s very easy on the wallet, too. They’re a reliable bet for lunch, and if you’re still hungry, head to Sorrento for an ice cream dessert!

7. Where are the best places to drink in La Boca?

Temple

Temple is one of Buenos Aires’ best breweries, and there are quite a few of them in the city. One has recently opened along El Caminito, and it’s sandwiched between two conventillos. There’s a lot of outdoor seating, and this place is always bustling. I love their Wolf IPA, which is really light and refreshing on a hot day! This place is open every day from 11 am – 8 pm and also serves bar food like burgers and nachos.

Café Bar de los Artistas

Café Bar de los Artistas is an awesome spot to grab a drink because they brew their own beer right here in La Boca! This place is really easy to find because they have statues of Maradona, Eva Person, and Carlos Guidel on the balcony. The colorful patio is excellent for Instagram photos, and you can often catch some tango outside – so, really, this is a quintessential La Boca bar! They’re open every day from late morning to the early evening hours.

8. When is the best time to visit La Boca?

Yellow and red building in La Boca, Buenos Aires.
Yellow and red building in La Boca, Buenos Aires

The locals are late risers in Buenos Aires, so we recommend visiting La Boca in the afternoon. If you go in the morning, lots of businesses will be closed, and the streets will be pretty quiet. Normally, that’s a good thing, but the bustling atmosphere is a big part of what makes La Boca so special. It’s best to wait until it gets busier. 

You should try to leave before it gets dark, though, as La Boca still isn’t the safest place to be at night. So the afternoon is prime time!

Related Read: Another incredible Argentine city is Mendoza. There is plenty to do in Mendoza, and it’s one of our favorite places to go wine tasting!

9. Is it safe to visit La Boca?

Colorful buildings in La Boca
You can really see all the colors of the rainbow here!

Yes, it’s perfectly safe to visit La Boca during the day. The area is very popular with tourists, so you won’t stick out, and we found that the people here were super friendly. You should keep an eye on your belongings and make sure they’re zipped away in a secure bag, though. Like any busy tourist area, pickpockets and phone snatchers do operate here. 

At night, La Boca feels sketchier, and if you stick around after dark, there’s more of a chance that you might get robbed. But during the day, it’s absolutely fine to visit! 

10. Can you visit La Boca without a tour?

Yes, it’s definitely possible to visit La Boca without a tour. However, the area can get pretty busy and some tourists have concerns about safety. You might feel more comfortable going with a guide, and there are plenty of great tours in Buenos Aires

The first time we went to La Boca, it was on this sightseeing tour, and we found that it gave us a great introduction to the area. Our guide also taught us a lot about La Boca’s history, which we found really interesting. Then, we went back again another day to explore more by ourselves (and to eat lots of choripán). 

11. How long do you need to visit La Boca?

Colorful windows in the cute area of La Boca, Buenos Aires
Just enjoy the colors!

You only need about half an hour to explore El Caminito, take photos, and walk around the neighborhood. However, that’s the minimum amount of time if you don’t have long in the city – you can definitely stay for longer! You can easily spend a few hours there if you visit the Quinquela Martín Museum and visit some of the restaurants and bars. It’s a really nice place to hang out, watch tango, and enjoy the atmosphere.

12. Is visiting La Boca suitable for children?

Yes. La Boca is safe to visit during the day, and it’s super bright and colorful, so kids tend to enjoy it. We saw quite a few families when we came here. The restaurants are family-friendly, and although there are some cool bars around, it’s not a huge party area where people come to overindulge in alcohol. 

13. Tips for visiting La Boca

Cute street lights painted in colors in La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Cute street lights painted in colors in La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Go during the day

La Boca is a fantastic area to visit during the day, but it’s not so great after dark. Most of Buenos Aires is safe and walkable at night, but La Boca is not. There are still many social problems in the area, so although it’s very tourist-friendly by day, it’s best to head back to the city center when the sun goes down. 

Keep an eye on your belongings

The worst thing that’s likely to happen to you in La Boca is getting pickpocketed. That’s only really likely if you don’t keep an eye on your belongings. Put your phone and wallet in a zip pocket or bag, not somewhere it can be easily snatched from, like your back pocket. Don’t leave them on the table when you’re sitting outside at a restaurant, either.

Bring cash

There are two reasons why it’s a good idea to bring cash to La Boca. One is that it usually works out cheaper. Although you do now get the “tourist” exchange rate when paying with a card (which is a good thing!), businesses still like cash, and many offer a 10% discount if you pay with cash. We even benefited from this in some supermarkets! 

The second reason is that the tango dancers and singers often pass around a tip basket. It’s polite to give them a little cash in exchange for their performance. They don’t pressure you, so you can just give what you think is appropriate. 

Don’t wear a River Plate shirt

As we mentioned earlier, the rivalry between Boca Jrs and River Plate runs deep, so don’t wear a River Plate shirt to this neck of the woods – it will not be well received. Conversely, if you buy a Boca Jrs jersey from one of the vendors and put it on, the locals will beam at you. 

14. Is visiting La Boca worth it?

Decorated buildings in La Boca, Buenos Aires
Can you spot the statue?

Yes, La Boca is hands down one of the most interesting parts of Buenos Aires to explore. I’d even go as far as to say it’s one of the best places to visit in all of Argentina!

It’s got a really interesting history, the colorful houses look amazing, and most of all, the atmosphere here is so much fun. It’s such a vibrant, lively area that you can’t help but have fun here. We loved it! In fact, it’s one of the top experiences here, which is why we included it in our 2-day Buenos Aires itinerary.

Related Read: If you have the time, you should definitely visit Ushuiau (aka The End of the World). This southern city is absolutely stunning, and there are many fun things to do in Ushuaia, too!

Other Activities to do While You’re in Buenos Aires

Trying mate for the first time during the Argentine Experience in Buenos Aires
Trying mate for the first time during the Argentine Experience in Buenos Aires
Tango during a show in Buenos Aires, Argentina
A tango show in Buenos Aires

Visiting La Boca is just one of many fun things you can do in Buenos Aires. So if you’re looking for even more activities or day trips from Buenos Aires, check out some of my favorites below!

  • See a tango show – Since Buenos Aires is the tango’s birthplace, you just know the tango shows in Buenos Aires are next level. But seriously, we were blown away by the dancers and the incredible meal (more steak!) as part of this House of Tango Show.
  • Gran Café Tortoni – Gran Café Tortoni is an iconic Buenos Aires coffeehouse. it’s one of the oldest cafes in the city and has even been named one of the most beautiful cafes in the world! This is the perfect place to grab a late-morning coffee or medialunas (Argentina’s mini croissants). You can also buy tickets to their evening tango show here!
  • Shop at the San Telmo Market – Located in one of the most historic and atmospheric neighborhoods, the San Telmo Market is a huge indoor market with fresh produce, amazing street food stalls, and antique stores. The market is open daily from roughly 9 am – 8 pm, although some restaurants close around 4 pm, and other stalls and shops are only open on weekends.
  • Experience the Gaucho lifestyle – Gauchos are Argentina’s cowboys and an integral part of the culture. To experience this firsthand, take a gaucho tour in Buenos Aires! You can head to the countryside on this Estancia Tour, which includes horseback riding, a barbecue feast, and stories from the gauchos themselves.
  • Try an interactive dining experience – Food is incredible in Buenos Aires, and The Argentine Experience takes it to the next level. When you book this immersive dining experience, you get to make (and eat) your own empanadas, taste world-renowned wine and steak, and mingle with other guests. It’s a night to remember and the perfect way to sample all the local treats!

Where to Stay in Buenos Aires, Argentina

spacious room at Hilton Buenos Aires, Argentina
Photo credit: Hilton Buenos Aires

If you’re heading to Buenos Aires soon, you might want to figure out where you’re staying! Luckily, there are many great options in the city. As you’re narrowing it down, you can take a peek at our guide to the best areas to stay in Buenos Aires.

You don’t need to break the bank to stay here, but if you are searching for a luxurious getaway, you can find that too. Here are my top picks for various price ranges!

Hilton Buenos Aires – $$$

You can’t beat the location with the riverside Hilton Buenos Aires. You’ll be within walking distance of downtown and about a 30-minute drive from Palermo. There’s a rooftop pool to relax in or sit down for a meal or drink at the hotel’s restaurant or bar.

The service is exceptional, and the rooms are spacious. It’s a more expensive place to stay at $250-350 USD per night, but worth it if you’re looking for a five-star experience. So for the ultimate luxury in Buenos Aires, book your stay at the Hilton online here.

Broadway Hotel & Suites – $$

Located in the heart of Buenos Aires, the Broadway Hotel & Suites offers really spacious rooms at a great price. The swimming pool on the roof has amazing panoramic city views and a sun deck to soak up some rays. The rooms feature large windows, minimalistic art deco-type décor, and bathrooms with marble fittings. You’ll also have plenty of choices for shopping and restaurants nearby.

Plus, a junior suite here can be under $70 USD! To snag this awesome deal, I highly recommend you check availability and book online in advance.

Selina Palermo – $

Stay in one of the trendiest neighborhoods of Buenos Aires on a budget! Selina Palermo puts you close to the best bars and nightclubs – in the heart of Palermo. The place feels really modern, and there are nice extras like a rooftop bar, hostel events, breakfast, and bike rentals available.

Shared dorm rooms with bunk beds are around $20 USD per night. If sharing isn’t your style, there are affordable private rooms with nice balconies overlooking the city starting at around $90 USD. You can book your stay on Booking.com or HostelWorld.com to secure your room!

Planning your Trip to Argentina

Glacier Trekking on the Perito Moreno Glacier, El Calafate, Argentina
The glacier trekking is so much fun!

Accommodation in Argentina

Booking accommodation is one of the biggest aspects of your trip, and we should know as we stay in a new hotel up to 40 times per year! Funny enough, we make 99% of these bookings on one website and that’s Booking.com – and there are a few reasons why we use this site!

Number one is the website is easy to use and sorts accommodation options. That takes the stress out of planning which honestly still affects us and we do it more than not.

Second, is the price guarantee. We have literally booked a hotel months before and then 1 week out found it cheaper (we always do a quick search), and they’ll match that price from anyone’s website including the hotels!

And third, is the Genius loyalty program. If you make a certain amount of bookings per year you get a Genius discount. We are level-two geniuses because we make more than 5 a year. At participating hotels, we get things like free breakfast included, early check-in, and up to 15% off.

You can check out all their accommodation options throughout Argentina!

Renting a car in Argentina

renting a car in patagonia
We rented a car in Southern Argentina and found that it was a very convenient and enjoyable way to travel!

We enjoyed a rental car for our second trip to Argentina when we travelled in Patagonia – and wow, what a way to travel! But the best part was that we only paid $40 USD per day for a 5-person sedan!

But how? Well, if you’re renting a car in Argentina, the cheapest company is Discover Cars. We often get questions from readers asking us if the website is fake because it seems too cheap! It’s a great website and the one we used for our rental.

If you do want to compare prices (and you should), do a quick search on Airport Car Rentals too. They’re another big competitor and each company often has its own deals to offer!

Tours in Argentina

drinking glacier water from perito moreno glacier
Drinking pure glacier water on our glacier tour!

Tours are a tricky one. We love booking online because we can check reviews of that exact tour but they can be pricier than booking directly in person. So for this, we often do it 50/50 – half of the time in person and the other half of the time we book tours online in advance.

When we do book online, we use Get Your Guide and Viator. Both companies offer the same service with different selections of tours and reviews on each tour.

Don’t get Caught without Travel Insurance!

We never travel without travel insurance! We’ve had a few instances during our travels when one of us has ended up in the hospital, and travel insurance has saved us thousands of dollars over the years!

SafetyWing is our go-to insurance, we both have policies with them whenever we travel.

They offer travel medical insurance that’s super affordable (only $45 USD per 4 weeks!)The only thing to note is that the insurance must be purchased once you’ve left your home country – we typically buy it as soon as we land at the airport.  

We’ve personally used SafetyWing for many different trips, and we’ve been reimbursed for countless expenses when we’ve fallen ill. SafetyWing even covered our flights back to Canada in full when the pandemic first happened (when last-minute flights before the borders closed were super expensive!) While most travel insurance companies left people stranded, SafetyWing fully reimbursed us for our last-minute, pricey flights!

Also, because it is so affordable, there really is no excuse not to take out a policy. Check prices and get a quote online here with SafetyWing (you can even take out a policy if you’re already traveling!)

Thanks for reading!

Daniel and Bailey take a selfie in Buenos Aires
Thanks for reading!

La Boca is one of the must-visit neighborhoods in Buenos Aires. It’s full of life, culture, and color. You’ll definitely feel that local spirit and learn a thing or two about the city’s history. If you have the time, we suggest taking a sightseeing tour to hit all the top sites and then returning to explore further on your own.

La Boca is just one of the many places you should visit in Buenos Aires. If you want to learn more, check out our blog about Argentina here. We’ve also written about many other destinations in South America. To help you out, we’ve linked to some articles below.

10 BEST Tours and Excursions in El Calafate, Argentina!

13 BEST Places to Visit in Chile

COMPLETE Guide to the Torres del Paine W-Trek in 2024