The largest city in the Santa Fe province of northern Argentina on the shore of the Paraná river, Rosario is a pleasant but vibrant city, providing an alternative to Buenos Aires for those looking to get a taste of South America.
Previously known as the ‘land of the streams’ (due to the surrounding rivers) and under the control of the Calchaquí tribes, the history of Rosario itself starts with captain Luis Romero de Pineda, who was awarded the lands for service to the Spanish crown in 1689. The settlement developed quickly over the course of the 18th century, assisted by the involvement of the Jesuits, but Rosario was only granted city status in 1852 after its involvement in the Battle of Caseros (a pivotal conflict in the Argentinean civil war). Economic prosperity followed as the Paraná was opened for trade and, over the course of the 19th and 20th centuries, the city’s reputation grew to the point of being considered as capital of the republic.
Rosario’s recent history has been plagued by disasters, be they natural (the floods of 1986) or economic (the collapses of 1989 and 2001. However, the city is currently in a state of recovery, making it a perfect time to visit.
Attractions & Culture
Rosario may not have the glamour and spectacular sights of Buenos Aires but still has plenty to keep tourists interested. Representative of the architecture of Rosario is The Lion’s Palace in the Calle Santa Fe, an austere but enchanting edifice in a neo-Gothic style, and a brief saunter around the city will lead you to other examples.
However, Rosario is mainly known for the National Flag Memorial. The story goes that General Manuel Belgrano raised the Argentinean flag for the first time in Rosario in 1812. This monument, portraying a ship drifting towards the future, celebrates this fact and simply has to be seen if you’re in Rosario.
More relaxing are the combined attractions of the Parque Independencia, the perfect place for a stroll, and La Florida beach, naturally extremely popular for all those looking to relax. However, if you bring along the kids, you might want to keep them busy at the award-winning Children’s City project, comprised of three departments; ‘The Children’s Field’, ‘The Invention Island’ and ‘The Childhood Farm’.
Rosario is home to a number of great local museums and galleries. These include the Contemporary Arts Museum (specialising in modern Argentinean art), the Fine Arts Museum ‘Juan B. Castagnino’ (focusing on historical national art), the Urquiza Park Planetarium and the Decorative Arts Museum ‘Firma y Odilo Estévez’.
The city also enjoys celebrating an array of annual festivals and events such as Friend’s Day on July 20th, the Encuentro y Fiesta Nacional de Colectividades during December (dominated by concerts and parades) and the Día de la Virgen del Rosario on October 7th (celebrating the foundation of the city).
As with all of Argentina, football dominates sport in Rosario. The local football team, the fabulously named Club Atlético Newell’s Old Boys, play their games in the Primera División at the Estadio Newell’s Old Boys and, with former players like Diego Maradona and Gabriel Batistuta, their footballing pedigree is undoubted.
As Argentina’s third-largest city, you can expect to find plenty of excellent places to shop. Common starting points for tourists are the Plaza 25 de Mayo, but also be sure to check out the streets of Cordoba and San Martin.
Nightlife & Dining
Representing Argentinean cuisine, meat (and beef in particular) figures heavily in the more traditional restaurants of Rosario. Particularly good places to eat are El Paso de La Estancia in Pellegrini Avenue, La Estancia in Paraguay y Pellegrini and Estación Güemes in Güemes y Ov. Lagos.
You can also find international alternatives like Italian at ‘Da Vinci’ Ristorante at España 777 and the more American style of Rock & Feller’s in Cordoba y Dorrego.
Rosario’s nightlife is one of its selling points, with plenty of bars and pubs such as Club Fellini Pellegrini in Avenue Pellegrini and a great selection of nightclubs like El Refugio Dance in Avenue Rivadavia and Soul in Avenue Puccio y Costanera.
ETUR – Rosario Tourist OfficeAvenue Belgrano & Buenos AiresRosarioTel: +54 341 480 2230E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.orgWeb: [http://www.rosarioturismo.com/ Rosario Tourism]
AirportRosario is served by Rosario International Airport, some 13 km away from the city itself. There are bus and taxi services available from the airport.
International and domestic connecting flights are available but only to limited destinations and, if you are travelling from outside South America, you can expect to change at Buenos Aires.
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