Turismo en Argentina
Buscar alojamientos, excursiones ,etc
Información de Argentina
Ubication of Buenos Aires Climate in Buenos Aires Relief in Buenos Aires Flora in Buenos Aires Fauna in Buenos Aires History of Buenos Aires Culture in Buenos Aires
   Leandro N. Alem
   Puerto Iguazú
   Puerto Rico
   4 Tracks
   Air Activity
   Nautical Activty
   Horse Riding
   Mountain Bike
   Golf Courses
   Ski Resorts
   Argentine Wines
   Rural Tourism
   The Tango  
   Tourist Trains
   Jesuitics buildings
   Nationals Parks
Campana de una de las misines






Madre e Hija  guaraní












Ruinas de Santa Ana






Sacerdotes Jesuitas





Mapa de territorio Jesuita






Plano de concepcion de la sierra





Vasija realizada por los Jesuitas











Ruinas de San Ignacio





Ruinas de San Ignacio de noche






Plano de San Carlos






Pueblo misionero de La Candelaria
The Guarani

They formed diverse tribes organized in villages, composed by families with a patriarchal organization directed by a cacique. They lived in big communitarian houses, called amloka. The economy was a communitary one too. They cultivated corn, manioc, beams, pumpkin and cotton. They were excellent hand crafters, they made two kinds of ceramic, a plain one, painted in black and red over white, and a corrugated one based on relieves made with fingers. They modeled plates, glasses, pipes, funerary urns and big recipients that were used to ferment alcoholic drinks. The Guaraníes before the arrival of Jesuits, believed in a superior being that shared the power with many other mythological deities, to which they didn't render any cult. Now, there is a belief that fantastic beings live in the forests and rivers, among others Yaguareté Abá, a very ferocious man-tiger. Mboi yaguá, a snake with dog head that lives in the tidelands, the Currupú hairy man that crawls during nap time and who ties to his victims, women and children, with his long virile member. The Caá Porá, giant that devours the humans and that smokes a pipe made with a skull. The Aña Mister of the darkness; Yasí yateré, blond and bearded midget that abducts children and women and who is nude, with a gold cane to become invisible. The Pirá ñú, fish with horse head that attacks the crafts; E yara that becomes a flamingo to love girls. The Guarani typical plates are: yopará, corn, beans and manioc stew. The Imbaipí, grated corn cooked in fat with golden onions and milk, the chipá guazú, grated corn with fat and milk, wrapped in piú leaves and cooked to the oven, the yagúa hacú, meat pieces fried with onions, garlic and parsley, boiled later on with hemel and muffled in flour of toasted manioc, soó apua cuéra, charque pieces cooked in broth. The chipá, it is a cake of manioc starch, corn flour, fat and eggs, cooked to the oven on banana's tree leaves.

Missionary architecture

The architectural evolution of the Jesuit missions accompanied the phases of its urbanistic development we can differ three different epochs.

  1. The foundational, from 1609 to the retirement and resettlement of the reductions, near the Uruguay and Paraná Rivers, with the purpose of the malocas bandeirantes in 1641.
  2. The consolidation time in the second half of the XVII century.
  3. The cycle of urban renovation and of the big architects from the end of the XVII century until the expulsion in 1767 and 1768.

In the time foundational time, the Christianized Guarani culture suffered changes in its habitat scales. The grouping of villages to form a reduction, caused them to integrate a more numerous social group, therefore, to configure a bigger scale than that from their tradition. The poligamic families, were formed by lots of people sharing the same lengthened house. Later on they became monogamic marriages with two or three children each one. They lived in small rooms although outside they kept their habitual proportions. The churches' building, to join a great number of faithful people in a common area, determined that they entered to interior spaces of unknown monumental architectural scale for their culture, which rituals were simple and outdoors. In the whole history of the Jesuit missions of Guaraníes, the construction materials were the vernacular ones. At the beginning they used those of their tradition, trunks and branches of noble wood were used in the structures, raw mud kneaded with vegetable fibers doors and windows and straw for roofs. Then they incorporated ceramic, bricks, tiles and finally ferruginous reddish stones from their regional quarries.

Loreto or Nuestra Señora de Loreto was founded in 1611 on the Paranapanema. In 1631 it was moved to Misiones settling down to the south of the Yaberiby River. In 1650 Loreto had 1.717 inhabitants, in 1667, 2089 and in 1733 it had 6077 inhabitants, this quantity diminished to only 1500 inhabitants in 1784. Loreto's Church and the priest's residence, also known as colleges or convents, constituted the most important buildings in the reduction. The construction of the church differs in some aspects of the precious ones, it has 3 aisles and a staircase formed by 4 steps and a rest, it measures were 27 meters front by 78 meters length, the sacristy that was at the back was included there. Nowadays the walls are totally covered by arboreal vegetation. Most of the lateral walls are conserved, and there are several holes that have left the old columns that supported the roof. Loreto's Church has an organ with 2 otrieles and 3 confession boxes. It is supposed that the altar of the Virgen de Nuestra Señora de Loreto could reproduce the shape and relief from Nazaret's house, with the decoration of its structure that is now conserved in Loreto's sanctuary in Italy. In spite of their 3 aisles, Loreto's Church as most of the Jesuit Churches of the reduction, remembers the old Roman basilicas, since their main objective was the one of gathering to the biggest possible quantity of faithful. At the back of the church building, in ruins, there are two rooms of about 8 meters width by 14 meters length, it is supposed they had to be the sacristies, since they were always annexed to the temple. Between the Virgin's altar and the Mayor one it was the Presbytery that occupied the center of the building, behind the altar, at the back there was another room the Contra-sacristy that had two lateral doors.
San Javier

San Javier's group is a big town, located on a very well situated hill, along an strategic curve of Uruguay River. There are only a few high constructions. There are low basements in the main buildings. But to that superficial level in the 1980's decade you could see part of the orchard, and the whole cask (cemetery, temple, residence and workshop) and not less than 30 housing pavilions. The sacristy and the presbytery conserve walls of about 2 meters height, being the church the one that is in worse conservation state. The threatened constructions are those located partly to the north and east of the square that it is covered by a plantation. The place that was chosen for the settlement is located in the higher point of the place from where you can watch the Uruguay River and the whole area. The workshops were built to an inferior level than the college and far from the orchard. In the school gallery exists nowadays part of a wide staircase very well worked. In front of what had to be the cotiguazú, beside Uruguay River, there was a chapel that served also as watch-tower from which there are still foundations and tiles.

Santa María la Mayor

This architectural group is one of the best known ones, although it is the less extensive from Misiones. It owes its fauna, in first term, to its residence , the best one conserved together with that of San Ignacio Miní. The workshop's place is small and the houses are very little, they are similar to San Ignacio and Santa Ana's ones. When the Jesuits were expulsed there were only thirteen arrays of housings, that integrated a small urban nucleus. If they are compared with the 68 form Apóstoles. The rest of the constructions are destroyed. Most of Santa María is under ground. It gathers the vestiges of a small Jesuit town half finished. It didn't have a church and the place that was used as such, it was not in the square, but in an adjacent one. Its old main church burnt according to the chronicles, about 1735 or 1738, while another one was projected to replace it, some of the shop that separated the courtyards were opened, displacing their masonry until the galleries columns to win width. That is the church that today attracts people attention in Santa María la Mayor. When the Jesuit were expelled, they had the whole timber for the new church in front of the square. The expulsion surprised them among the demolition operations of the old building and the construction of the new one, there are only some walls used for secondary ends.

The group of Corpus' ruins extends around the cemetery of the present town that occupies part of the old Jesuit square. You can arrive to the Jesuit Group along a rubble way. The destruction of the Jesuit vestiges is as old as the colonization of the first capital of Misiones National Territory. This was an area of early colonization, it was occupied from the middle of the XIX c by Paraguayans and Brazilians, who were followed by Europeans immigrants: French, Swiss, Poles and Hungarian. The intensive land occupation, gave place to settlements that populated densely the area. Public and private buildings show columns and walls built with materials of the ruins. The extraction of useful materials of the ruins was made from the periphery towards the center, beginning with the housings that blocked the opening of roads imposed by the "chacras" owners. In this way, floors, and foundations of the northeast housing area disappeared. The front of the church that had a deep roofed atrium and a staircase of 18 steps, expresses the groups importance; and the wall on the cemetery side is very well kept. At the back of the sanctuary, the presbytery and other rooms, there are uniform mounds that although quite high, one can not say certainly how many foundations and stone walls they hide. Following towards the west you can find a very big cemetery, the square is the biggest one discovered up to now, it keeps its perimeter to the foundations level and there are some elevated tracts together with vestiges of the dead chapel. Separated from the cemetery by a wide alley, a mutilated cotiguazú prolongs to the south east area of the housings. Its disposition is different to the habitually symmetrical western one, with its openings to the interior urban spaces, finding out a closest relation with the important eastern constructions. The housings sector flanks the longitudinal axis for the east and it is symmetrical up to where you can recognize. In the inventories carried out when the Jesuit were expelled, there are details about the temples, testifying the Baroque splendor of the Christian Guarani culture. According to the inventories, Corpus' church was perfectly completed and ornamented to be consecrated when there was ocassion, it had 3 garden altarpieces and 2 gildings, and marbled carved 5 big pictures with carved, golden frames, mirrors, chandeliers, musical instruments and liturgical objects of high material and artistic value.
Ruinas de Santa Ana

They are located to a few kilometers from San Ignacio Mini ruins. Santa Ana's first reduction was founded in 1633, in Sierras del Tapé on the Yacuy heads, in the present Brazilian territory. As a consequence of the destruction action of the bandeirantes in 1637, 2000 guaraníes should emigrate together with the priests Pedro Romero and Agustín Contreras. After some years of temporary establishment on the High Paraná, its residents settled down definitively in the present location in 1660. The Guaraníes inhabitants population average oscillated between 3800 and 4000 people, reaching its best monument in 1768, with 4344 inhabitants. Santa Ana's church was one of the most beautiful of the thirty Jesuit towns. It was built in 1725 by the architect José Brassanelli.

San Ignacio Miní

This town was founded originally in the Guiará region, in the present Brazilian territory, in 1660 by the Jesuit priests José Cataldino and Simón Maseta from Italian origin. In 1631 they escaped from the place looking for shelter because of the bandeirantes that wanted to hunt them and to sell them as slaves. The exodus was organized by the priest. Antonio Ruiz de Montoya, who descended along Paraná River accompanied by more than 12000 guaraníes. A year later, they installed next to Yabebirí, Paraná River's flowing. In 1696, they moved again. Loreto is located to the South and San Ignacio to the north of this stream where they settled definitively. They brought stones from the Paraná quarries, located to 3 Km of the place. The transport was carried out with the use of oxen.
In the constructions two different types of stones can be distinguished sandstones and volcanic or taurúes. In the urbanistic layout they used a square system which central axis would be the square and surrounding it there were the most imposing buildings as the church, the town council, the chapels, and behind these, the family housings, shops, warehouses and deposits. The constructions were made of stones, located in juxtaposed form, together with mud or cements, the roofs were made of wood, and of tiles made by the natives. The standing out construction was the church which dimensions were 74 meters length by 24 meters width and 15 meters height. The foundations were regular ones, of 3,5 meters, the roof was placed on a stone column in double line and columns incrusted in the walls. The main door had around 3,2 meters and the lateral one 2,35 meters. It had a baptistery, the most important altar and two minor ones with several ../images. The mortal remains of the founders, Cataldino and Maseta were in the biggest altar. To its right it was the sacristy and to the left the Musical conservatory. The cemetery was located next to the temple. It was divided in 4 sections for women, men, boys and girls. They didn't use crosses in the tombs , they simply placed tablets with the name and date of death. They buried them in mud vessels called yapepó, in fetal position and looking towards the salient one, because they believed in reincarnation.

To one side of the cemetery was the Cotiguazú, it was a kind of hospital and asylum where the widows carried out nurses works. To the left of the temple it was the priests courtyard, the school, the residence, the library, the kitchen and the guaraní orchard to the south. San Ignacio's population in 1644 was about 1750 inhabitants, in 1731, 4536 inhabitants, being reduced to 3000 inhabitants in 1762. A year after the Jesuit's expulsion there were only 800 guaraniés. From the expulsion onwards, the population began a constant decadence and abandonment that finished with their destruction. At the beginning of the XX century, two writers arrived at San Ignacio from Buenos Aires, they were: Leopoldo Lugones and Horacio Quiroga who gave to know the existence of vestiges of the Guarani Jesuit culture. The National Government began the recovery works and restoration of the reduction, that was declared National Historical Monument in 1943 and Humanity's World Patrimony in 1986.

Viajoporargentina - Información turística sobre la República Argentina
© 2003- Prohibida su reproducción total o parcial. Derechos de Autor 527292 Ley 11723