Diego Maradona in Buenos Aires: 9 Iconic Sites dedicated to an Icon

Diego Maradona’s talent was spotted early.

At just 10 years old he was discovered by Argentine Juniors recruiter Francisco Cornejo and only 5 years later they debuted him on the field that now bears his name.

He was able to pull himself and his family out of poverty and into a new life, he led Argentina to its second World Cup victory in 1986, and he is (literally) worshiped by those who love him.

And I mean literally – there is a church dedicated to him, La Iglesia Maradoniana.

But there’s no denying that controversy and addiction marked his career along with his success.

Tour the ups and downs of Maradona’s life by going off the beaten path in Buenos Aires, following the footsteps of D10S.

QUICK NOTE: This post contains affiliate links and Sol Salute may receive a commission for purchases made through these links, at no extra cost to you.

Maradona Tour in Buenos Aires

Fútbol Experience is a small local business offering football themed tours and I recently went on their Maradona Experience.

If you want the insight you only get by going with a knowledgeable guide (in this case, a local fútbol fan) then you’ll gain a lot from this tour.

Reserve via WhatsApp, click here to open a chat with Dan. Let them know you heard about them here and you’ll get a 10% discount.

I was invited to try the tour out and genuinely enjoyed it. As always, all opinions are my own. It has been great meeting small businesses like Dan’s Futbol Experience so I can recommend and support local. Now, a bit about our tour…

Dan greeted us right on time with a gift, an Argentine jersey! We all immediately put them on, which made for great photos throughout the walk.

We started with a tour of the stadium, which has their own passionate guides but Dan gave even more tidbits and facts throughout.

After the museum tour, we went on a fun mural walk seeing the countless pieces of street art of Maradona on and around the stadium.

We had lunch as a group where Diego himself used to eat. And if the milanesa is good enough for D10S, it’s good enough for me.

Dan took the opportunity to give us a great overview of Maradona’s life here with photos and articles to go with the antidotes.

The tour capped off with a visit to Maradona’s first house, where he lived with his entire family. It’s maintained in tact, just as they left it.

Fútbol Experience includes transportation so at the tour’s end, everyone piles into the car to drive back downtown, learning and singing local football songs throughout the drive.

To say goodbye, the group stopped at two massive murals of Maradona and Messi, D10S and his successor, both done by Argentina’s most renowned muralist.

Fútbol Experience offers two tours:

  • The Maradona Experience – Dive deeper in the life of D10S.
  • The Boca-River Experience – Learn the fundamentals with a tour of Buenos Aires’ two most important teams.
  • How to reserve: Reserve via WhatsApp, click here to open WhatsApp and ask for more information (they speak English and Spanish).
The Diego Maradona Sanctuary in Paternal, maintained by his godson, is a full display of the near religious fervor surrounding him.

Diego Maradona in Buenos Aires: His Start in Paternal

Maradona is world famous for goals and trophies won while wearing a lot of blue jerseys: the blue and yellow of Boca Juniors, the sky blue and white of the Argentine national selection, and the royal blue of Naples.

But it’s the red and white of a small team in a residential barrio of Buenos Aires that launched his career.

Argentina Juniors in Paternal discovered Maradona in Villa Fiorito at the age of 10 and nurtured his talent before debuting him on the field in 1976.

They purchased a home for him just a few blocks from the stadium that now bears his name.

To wander the streets of Paternal is to follow Diego’s first footsteps toward infamy.

Here are the main sites and museums in Paternal, we visited just about all of them with Dan on the Maradona Experience.

Paternal is a calm residential neighborhood and is very safe if you want to go explore on your own or you can opt for a guided experience like discussed above.

If you’re tempted, don’t forget you’ll get a 10% discount mentioning Sol Salute when you book here.

La Casa de D10S

For Maradona’s 18th birthday, Argentina Juniors gifted him this house so he wouldn’t have to travel from Villa Fiorito to the stadium every day.

Today the home a museum open to the public.

Diego Maradona’s bedroom in his first house, purchased for him by Argentina Juniors.

The home is extremely well preserved, with everything just as he left it. Things that aren’t original, like the living room’s wall paper, have been re-created.

Diego lived here with his parents, four sisters, and two brothers from 1978-1980.

You can see Doña Tota’s kitchen in tact, Diego’s bedroom, and the family’s living room. Upstairs there’s a shrine to Diego with trinkets left by devotees and a small gift shop.

To be sure they’re open when you visit you can make an appointment, details are in their Instagram. Hours are a bit odd (closed Sunday & Monday) so you can also confirm that on their Google Maps page or by messaging them.

El Museo el Templo de Futbol & Argentina Juniors Stadium

Visit the stadium where Diego Maradona started off his life changing career.

The stadium has an incredible museum filled with pieces of the club’s history, mostly donated by fans and players.

Jaime, our guide in the Stadium Museum, was an endless fount of information and facts!

The museum is open Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturdays from 10 am to 4 pm, with three guided tours that start at 10:30 am, 12:15 pm, and 2 pm.

Our guide Jaime was a never ending avalanche of information, a veritable human encyclopedia for Argentina Juniors’ history.

The tour includes an informative visit through the museum, a walk down through the press room, the locker room and showers, and the walk the players take from the locker room to the field.

It caps off with a visit to the stadium’s shrine to Diego, where many fans leave their jerseys in tribute.

D10S Murals in Paternal

The walls on all four streets of the stadium are blanketed in Maradona murals.

Take time to slowly walk the circumference of the stadium to see portraits highlighting iconic moments of his career, many even recreated historic photos (like a famous portrait of him with his parents).

Walk from the stadium to his house and you’ll see even more murals along the way.

The entire neighborhood pays homage to their most famous citizen.

Lo de Tato

A stone’s throw from the stadium at Caracas 2282 is Lo de Tato, a bodegon owned and run by none other than Tato himself along with his wife.

The restaurant is decorated in Argentina Juniors jerseys and is inextricably tied to the team as Tato played with Maradona himself.

Grab lunch here to eat with a piece of Argentina Juniors history and admire his collection of jerseys and team paraphernalia.

La Cafeteria de D10S

Diego decor in La Cafeteria de D10S

While Lo de Tato is dedicated Argentina Juniors, La Cafeteria de D10S is a shrine (yes, another one) dedicated to just Maradona.

This corner restaurant, also just a couple blocks from the stadium on Gavilan street, is on the walking route from the stadium to Diego’s house.

He’d stop here for a meal en route, if you want to eat a milanesa where D10S ate his milanesa, head here for lunch.

Diego Maradona Across Buenos Aires

Obviously Maradona’s history spans the entire city beyond Paternal.

Below are the main Maradona sites across Buenos Aires.

A mural of Maradona covers an entire apartment building in Constitucion Buenos Aires

Maradona Murals & Street Art

From La Boca to San Telmo and beyond, the entire city of an open air museum to its futbol greats.

There were always murals of Diego across Buenos Aires but after his death in 2020, homages to D10S popped up everywhere.

The largest and most impressive is on Avenida San Juan in Constitucion, photo above.

But if you keep you pay attention, you will see murals of Diego kicking a football all over Buenos Aires.

I loved this mural of Diego in La Boca, re-creating a famous photo of his daughter putting flowers in his socks. He kept them in while he played and they fell onto the field. See if you can find it around the corner from La Bombonera by the tram tracks.

La Basilica del Santísimo Sacramento

This stunner of a church in the heart of Buenos Aires’ downtown is where Diego Maradona married Claudia Villafañe in 1989.

While Argentina languished in financial crisis, Maradona spent 2 million dollars on his extravagant wedding.

To complete the wedding tour, you can take a look at the exterior of Luna Park Stadium where they held the reception, just 10 blocks away.

Boca Juniors

Maradona always loved Boca Juniors, one of the top two teams in Buenos Aires, and he was able to play for them for a short stint between 1981-1982 before moving to Europe to play for Barcelona.

In 1995, he came back to Buenos Aires for another short season in Boca before retiring from the sport, bookending his career with two great Buenos Aires teams.

Go on a tour of the famous Bombonera stadium in La Boca for a piece of iconic Argentine football history.

While in La Boca, you’ll see quite a few more murals of Maradona so keep your eyes open as you wander.

Lo del Diego, Caminito

Lo del Diego in La Boca’s Caminito (right on the waterfront) is a thematic bar and shop dedicated completely to D10S.

Unlike other restaurants (like those in Paternal), it’s very polished and clean, which makes sense as the complete description is the “First official Diego Armando Maradona thematic space.”

I’ll be blunt. It’s cheesy and not my personal cup of tea. I prefer the rough around the edges bars that feel less like an official merchandising opportunity.

Lo del Diego is described as a thematic space (and they’re not lying) but I’d describe it as a gift shop with a cafe on the side.

But if you want to pick up a jersey of Maradona’s from any team throughout his career, you’ll find it here along with magnets and tchotchkes galore.

Quick note that if it doesn’t matter to you whether the jersey is real, you’ll find jerseys ALL OVER the Caminito, in literally every store.

The Myth & The Legend: A Conclusion

Maradona’s life was filled with controversy and addiction, but there is no denying his vital importance in Argentina and his level of talent.

He is worshiped by some, revered by most, and remembered by all.

I hope this article helps you discover more about the legend, whether you explore on your own or with a tour.

What’s your favorite Diego anecdote or memory? Comment below!

Argentina Travel Resources

  • TRAVEL INSURANCE | It is always a good idea to travel insured. It protects you in so many cases, like lost luggage and trip cancellations, medical emergencies and evacuations. It’s very affordable with the potential to save you thousands in the case of an emergency. I recommend SafetyWing.
  • PHONE PLAN | These days, traveling with data is essential. Especially in Argentina where everything is managed on Instagram and WhatsApp. I recommend this E-SIM card. It’s hassle-free and affordable, for more read how to get an Argentina sim card.
  • ACCOMMODATION IN ARGENTINA booking.com is the most common hotel site used in Argentina and it’s where you’ll find the most options.
  • RENTAL CARS | I love to travel Argentina via road trip, I’ve always used rentalcars.com, now they are operating under the umbrella of Booking.com’s car rental system.
  • BUS TICKETS | Check Busbud for long distance bus routes and tickets.
  • VPN | If you’ll be using a public WiFi connection and want to secure your data, I highly recommend using a VPN, I personally use and have had a good experience with ExpressVPN. I also use it to access Hulu and American Netflix from Argentina.
  • FLIGHTS | Always check Google Flights and Skyscanner for flights to and within Argentina. Aerolineas Argentina is the local airline with the most routes. FlyBondi and Jetsmart are two budget airlines with dirt-cheap prices (but expect to pay for every add-on like luggage).
  • BOOK A CONSULTATION | I offer one-on-one travel consultations to help you plan your trip to Argentina. Pick my brain to get a local’s insight. Click here for more information.

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