Colorful La Boca

Photo © Bob Krist

Here’s another series of out-of-the camera JPEG outtakes from the Buenos Aires story. La Boca is a colorful tourist barrio, but it’s a little too touristy for National Geographic Traveler’s taste (after all, the story is called “Authentic Buenos Aires).

But I loved it because it was a visual candy store of riotous color and picturesque characters. So here’s a few snaps from a morning stroll through La Boca, all with a D90 and a 16-85mm, 70-300mm VR,  or sometimes, the 17-50mm f/2.8.

Photo © Bob Krist

More after the jump

Photo © Bob Krist

Photo © Bob Krist

Photo © Bob Krist

Photo © Bob Krist

Photo © Bob Krist

Photo © Bob Krist

This entry was posted in Destinations, Photo Gear, Photo Techniques, Travel.


  1. marco mendoza February 6, 2010 at 1:42 pm #

    wow great pictures! I haven’t been to Argentina yet but it definitely looks like you had a good time

    • Bob February 6, 2010 at 2:34 pm #

      Hi Marco: Thanks….yes BsAs (as they abbreviate it down there) was a blast. Bob

  2. mike a February 6, 2010 at 6:43 pm #

    bob, nice stuff my friend

  3. Shawn February 7, 2010 at 1:09 am #

    Awesome pictures!! Thanks for sharing.

    Now that you have the 16-85, do you find that the 12-24 in not as much of a mainstay as it once was?

    • Bob February 7, 2010 at 8:02 am #

      Shawn: Yes, the difference between a DX zoom starting at 16 instead of 18 made a huge difference in how often I reach for the 12-24mm, which is hardly ever these days. Back in my newspaper days, the 24mm was my go-to prime and I think, 30 years later, I still “see” in 24mm for a large majority of my wideangle stuff! BK

  4. Mike Morse February 7, 2010 at 1:49 pm #

    Bob: I am going to BA next Jan and have been in touch with Bernardo. He may be on vacation or spending time with family. but he says to try him again as the time nears. I have heard a lot about the dangers in BA. Did you have any concerns about your safety when you were out by yourself? I definitely want to see La Boca. I guess that means NG Traveler won’t be calling me.

    • Bob February 7, 2010 at 1:58 pm #

      Mike: La Boca is a daytime only destination. Perfectly fine in the daytime, dicey at dusk and beyond. I didn’t feel any real threats on the streets of BsAs. If you don’t speak Spanish, the taxi drivers can play havoc with you (I think they do that even if you do speak Spanish).

      You have to watch your bag in crowds, but that’s pretty much SOP in any major city. It’s the language thing that threw me, and I was glad to be working with Bernardo for that (among many other things!) , because I was surprised at how difficult it was to make myself understood to cab drivers. If you don’t go with a guide, it’s best to write down the addresses you want to go to, like you have to in Japan and places like that! Bob

  5. Benardo Galmarini February 7, 2010 at 8:27 pm #

    Hi Bob! The pictures of la Boca looks great!
    I also loved the multimedia Tango clip. It caught a very accurate sense of the way one can feel tango is about, here 😉

    • Bob February 7, 2010 at 9:27 pm #

      Hi Bernardo: Well, I have you to thank for these pictures! I’m about to do a post about the slide show, which explains why we didn’t use the narration….it was a hard show to put together. I am now trying to do one about the Feria. Best to Mercedes, Bob

  6. Mike Morse February 8, 2010 at 1:40 pm #

    Bob: Any problems with carry on allowances out of the country?

    • Bob February 8, 2010 at 1:42 pm #

      not when I was there.BK

  7. Wayne Bennett February 8, 2010 at 9:18 pm #

    Hi Bob: going to Argentina, Chile, and Peru in Jan.2011. Wonderful colors. Just wondering what is your picture control setting control in 85% of your shooting? Standard, neutral, or vivid?

    • Bob February 8, 2010 at 9:23 pm #

      Wayne: Vivid for landscapes, and most street scenes. Neutral, or portrait, for people. Have a great trip. Bob

  8. Erin Switzer February 8, 2010 at 9:58 pm #

    Great photos, Bob! I just recently moved from New York to Buenos Aires (I talked to you at the photo show in NY to say how much I enjoyed your funny posts about the challenges shooting in BA!) so I am always looking for new ways to photograph this city. I too loved many parts of La Boca and it’s interesting to see how you were able to make it look less touristy. I will have to go back and try again!

  9. Hektor February 24, 2010 at 2:57 am #

    Bob: I was born in BA, but live in LA, now. When in BA, I avoid the La Boca district, just because of the Riachuelo. However, it can be a religious experience: you can literally walk on water on that river 🙂 . You’ve seen it and know what I mean.

    I remember when I was studying Argentine history of the late 1700’s early 1800’s, we were reading how the maids, servants and others washed their clothes at the shores of the Riachuelo. Say what? 🙂 We, as students, could not phantom the idea. 🙂 They were trying to do what? 🙂 That river is the curse of BA.

    You are right about the cab drivers in BA and their lack of English. It is the same thing in New York, though. The cab drivers in NY, do not speak English, either 🙂 . They speak “Cabanese.” 🙂

    I really love your work.


    • Bob February 24, 2010 at 9:39 am #

      Hektor: Thanks! And that’s a great point about NY cab drivers…but at least they’re supposed to be able to understand English. Speaking it is a different story. Bob

  10. Imagine Argentina - Wade March 1, 2010 at 1:36 am #

    Phenomenal images Bob! Capturing the perfect tango shot along El Caminito is a difficult task…but YOU NAILED IT! Please keep up the wonderful – and inspiring – work.

    • Bob March 1, 2010 at 11:01 am #

      Thanks Wade, you’ve got some very good images of Argentina as well…beautiful place, yes? Bob

  11. wuxia November 30, 2011 at 3:45 pm #

    wo,it is beautifu!I’m an editor of photo magazine in china,would you like to cooperate with us,and show some photo to the chinese reader?is it possible?hope hear from you! best

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