South America: Encarnación and Jesuit Missions

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7 – 8 March 2010

Bus to Posadas and Across the Border to Encarnación

Our bus arrived over an hour late, but we had a comfortable 14 hour journey to Posadas, Argentina. After we arrived, we took a taxi across the Parana River to Encarnación, Paraguay. We arrived in town just after noon and immediately looked for a hotel to check in to for the next two nights. We found an acceptable one near the bus station and then decided to walk toward the main plaza for some lunch. After lunch we found a nicer hotel across the street so paid the first hotel for that night and then moved our bags there. The afternoon was spent walking around the city and then we ate dinner at a restaurant that had an outdoor balcony overlooking the main plaza.

Visiting the Jesuit Ruins of Trinidad and Jesus

On Monday morning we had continental breakfast at the hotel and then walked to the public bus station. There we boarded a the bus to Ciudad del Este (the Brazilian border) and asked the driver to drop us off at the turnoff to the Trinidad mission, about 30 minutes into the journey. Once there we had to walk about a half mile to the entrance to the mission. We arrived there just as a tour group was leaving, and except for five other people who were there, had the entire site to ourselves.

It was a hot day so going into the buildings and getting some shade was a welcome relief from the strong sun. We climbed the tower for great views of the site and especially enjoyed the large church and adjoining area where some of the old relics were displayed.

After a couple of hours we walked back down to the main highway and hailed a taxi to take us 12 kilometers to the Jesus ruins. We made arrangements for the driver to come back and pick us up in two hours. Here we were the only ones there for the two hours we toured the site. This site was up on a hill and there were great views of the countryside all around. The main church here was very nice as well. We had some time for a picnic lunch under some trees before the taxi returned to take us back to the main highway. There we caught a passing bus almost immediately and were back in Encarnación a short time later. After a quiet dinner near the main plaza we called it a night.


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