We arrived in Rosario on a very cold, grey and windy afternoon. The 4 hour bus journey up from BA was rather uneventful and uninspiring, mostly flat farm lands. After catching a quick bus downtown and checking into our hostel, we headed out in the evening to see a bit of the city.
The City of Rosario is quite big although all the noteworthy attractions are within walking distance. The main reason for our visit to Rosario was to see the house where little Ernesto “Che” Guevara was born. Peryal had really been looking forward to this but we later found out that the original old house was being refurbished to be sold! Queue Peryal’s sad face
The next main attraction is Monumento Nacional a la Bandera (National Flag monument.) At night the monument is lit up spectacularly but the cold wind and the rain kept us from hanging around to enjoy it. The next day it was a little better so we ventured out early down to the Flag monument. The Monument has 3 parts; the 70m high Torre (Tower) which symbolizes the Revolution in May of 1810 and also houses General Belgrano’s remains (who was the creator of the Argentinian flag and first raised it in 1812); the Patio Civico (Civic Courtyard) and the Propileo Triunfal (Triumphal Propylaeum) representing the Nation as organized after the 1853 Constitution. All in all it’s a massive monument and incredible and awe inspiring to see how much pride and honour the Argentinians hold towards their independence and their flag. In fact there are little Argentinian flags flying in almost every street in Rosario. For a small donation you can take a lift to the top of the tower which affords great panoramic views of the city and the river Parana to the East.
We had been advised by a fellow Couchsurfer to have the grilled fish at Club Mitre on the riverfront for lunch. After a bit of wandering around the riverside parks we eventually found it down some shaky stairs, past an abandoned dock in a shot out old building next to where loads of people were having indoor communal barbeques. Struggling through the language barrier we put in an order but were not entirely sure of what exactly. I also ordered a light lager and somehow she bought me a 6.9% dark beer (not that I was complaining…) so we were a little bit apprehensive about what was coming. But when the food arrived our apprehension was instantly smothered by the terrific sight and smell of our lunch. That was, so far, the freshest, tastiest meal we had had since arriving in South America.
With full tummies we took a stroll further up the riverfront to the Contemporary Art museum which is housed in what used to be Silos.
Some of the art was interesting to say the least but the main attraction for me was the exterior of the building. Every 4 years they hold a competition for artists to provide suggestions for how they would paint the outside of the museum and the current design was created by a local student Marcos Martín Agüero.