Argentina travel blog by Mark Berman -
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Originally I came to Rosario in 2008 for 5 nights but didn't do much outside the city center where I was staying. I visited the bars, clubs and
shops mainly. I returned in 2012 to discover much more about Rosario, not all of it appealing. It has been said that Rosario is Argentinas
pretty girl capital, this could be true, but I can't say for sure. Anyway, what I can say is that after arriving from Buenos Aires, a 4hr bus
ride and catching a taxi into the center which takes around 10mins. I finally found a reasonably priced place to stay for my girlfriend and I.
Looking for a Budget Hotel
A budget hotel was not so easy to find. I had to visit the tourist office first to get directions for a place, the office is on the main street
along the riverfront.
Night Photos of the Cathedral
That evening I took my camera out to take a few night photos of Rosarios cathedral and plaza and to enjoy watching the
people in the city center.
Next day I started out early in order to see as much as I could around the city. I began down by the river near the
colorful boatsheds. I walked in the direction of the white Navy building and tourist office. The first great thing to see is the huge monument
called Monumento Historico Nacional a La Bandera - The Gallery Of Honour Of American Flags. For sure it's a group of spectacular monuments all
in the same place but really it is just a huge area of concrete and has no soul. The worst thing though is the backdrop of apartment buildings
all around it and so close, they should have planned that better I was thinking. I now came to a park with a fountain and a
statue of Santa Francisca Javier Cabrini (1850-1917), an Italian nun, a patron of immigrants. On the other side of the road is the building for
the river ferry called La Fluvial. An old sailboat called the Zvonimirova Ladja from The Navy of Zvonimir of Croacia stands as a monument in
the park as well as a bust (statue of the upper portion of the body) of Admiral Guillermo Brown (1777-1857), a national hero. Some guys were
fishing at the rivers-edge and had caught a bunch of small catfish. In the park around the ferry building there are various other monuments
to people like Domingo Polichiso who was known as El Islero and lived on the islands in the Parana River and Pablo Sarasate (1844-1908), violin
virtuoso from Spain who visited and played in Argentina. There are a couple of small plazas called Plaza Navarra and Plazoleta Abanderado
Grandoli and some more bronze guys - Juan B. Alberdi (1810-1884) an influential Argentine liberal and John Baptist Scalabrini (1839-1905) Italian
father of the migrants. I walked through another park area with a lookout point that had a view of the road and the backdrop of ugly apartments
right behind it. I now went in search of the Che Guevara monument at Plaza Che which was quite a few blocks away.
Dog Turds Everywhere
It was a pretty rough walk
getting to Plaza Che, a constant eye was needed on the pavement below to watch out for dog turds, it was bad, they were everywhere.
Finally getting to
the Rosario train station where Plaza Ernesto 'Che' Guevara is really just a shabby field next to it with an old nothing special statue of Che
at the back. There is nothing else really around here apart from an old church called the Instituto del Buen Pastor founded in 1896, another
plaza called Lucio Fontana and some wall graffiti of Che, Simon Bolivar and some other military guys.
Churches and Tango Shoes
While walking to the park I passed church Parroquia San Cayetano before arriving at Plaza General Lopez which was originally a fruit market in 1858, it has
many fully established trees. I found myself next on the high street where I passed a shop selling tango, salsa, flamenco and folklore dancing
shoes called Bottier
, the link goes to their website. A church called Basilica San Jose stands on the street corner nearby, an historic monument.
Parque Independencia (Park)
It was a long walk to get to Rosarios main park Parque Independencia from Plaza Che, at least 10 blocks. The park is large, the first section
I walked around is dominated by a monument to Giuseppe Garibaldi
(1807-1882) - an Italian general and politician, other monuments include one of composer Manuel de Falla
(1876-1946) and ex-president Dr. Carlos
Pellegrini (1846-1906) and military leader Manuel Belgrano
Parque Independencia has another area with gardens and a bridge over a small lagoon. It is not that attractive or well organised in my opinion.
A sign shows a photo of Che Guevara as a baby with his parents sitting in a seat beside the water in 1928. On the other side of the road is a
much bigger lagoon with an island and a place you can rent a small pedalboat and paddle around. In this area is a childrens garden and museum
Museo Historico Provincial.
Where Che Guevara Was Born
Now I wanted to go and find the actual house (apartment) where Che Guevara was born. I made my way to the address
of Entre Rios 480 by taxi, it's in the middle of town. I took a few photos and made a video
The last thing I did in Rosario before leaving
was to head back to the river and take a walk through the park there. The park was not that great, mainly because all the statues (at least
12) had been stolen and the park was full of empty concrete statue pedestals - not attractive! This is my main gripe with Rosario, it's a
city that is disorganised in its placement of things (parks and monuments) and it is not really that attractive either, very overrated.
Bus Terminal and Out
It was time now to get back to the bus terminal called Terminal Mariano Moreno
named after the Argentine lawyer (1778-1811).
My next destination after Rosario would be Santa Fe
, just 2hrs 20mins north.