Paraguay is not the most visited country in South America, but nevertheless, tourism is one of the most developed sectors of its economy. The growth of foreign tourists visiting the country is increasing every year.
For residents of neighboring countries, the city of Cerrito is an attractive destination. It is a famous sport fishing center. Also popular are the ruins of the Jesuit missions of Jesus and Trinidad. Asuncion has preserved many examples of ancient architecture. The city does not have a very developed infrastructure, but the tourist will have something to see. The city has many museums, shrines, architectural structures.
What to see in Paraguay?
The most interesting and beautiful places, photos and a brief description.
City of Asuncion
It is the capital and main city of Paraguay. It was founded on August 15, 1537 by the Spaniards. The city has preserved quite a lot of ancient architecture, as for a South American city. It houses two universities, churches and temples. The climate is warm and humid, and the Paraguay River flows near the city. There are not many tourists in Asuncion, so you should be careful.
In Paraguay, a huge dam is located on the Parana River. It is the second in the world in terms of energy production. Its length is 7235 m, its width is 400 m, and its height is 196 m. In terms of power, the dam is second only to the Chinese Three Gorges hydroelectric power station. Construction of Itaipu started back in 1978, and the two newest generators were added in 2007, there are 20 in total. They almost completely meet the needs of Paraguay in electricity.
National Pantheon of Heroes
In the heart of Asuncion, on the central square, one of the main attractions of the city is located - the National Pantheon of Heroes. The building was opened in 1936, it was designed on the model of the Parisian Les Invalides. The heroes of Paraguay are buried in it. Among them are the first president of the country and his son, marshals, unknown soldiers. There is also a memorial to Russian officers who fought for Paraguay.
Ruins of the Jesuit Missions of Jesus and Trinidad
These are Jesuit mission centers that were built in the 16th-17th centuries. The ruins of the missions Jesus and Trinidad are the only sites in Paraguay listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are 7 similar missions in it, but Trinidad is considered the most interesting. Once upon a time, 2,700 people lived on its territory. It consists of many buildings, including a church with an area of 6000 m².
Botanical and Zoological Gardens
The Botanical and Zoological Gardens of Asuncion were founded in 1914 by the German scientist Dr. Carlos Friebig. The collection of animals was replenished at the expense of the zoos of Montevideo, La Plata and from private individuals. Today, about 70 species of wild animals live in the gardens, which occupy an area of more than 110 hectares. Among them are lions, monkeys, snakes, turtles, sloths, anteaters.
Cerro Corra National Park
It is the largest protected natural area in Paraguay. The area of the park is 5.5 thousand hectares. It was founded in 1976 on the site where the last battle of the Paraguayan War took place in 1870. The park has recreation areas along the river flowing through it, architectural and historical monuments, as well as caves. Ancient inscriptions made in 1300 - 800 BC have been preserved on their walls.
City of Trinidad
The largest missionary center Trinidad is considered the historical center of Paraguay. It is located 300 km from the capital, near the border with Argentina. The city is built on the hills above the bay of Paraná. It is full of old stone buildings. At night, their massive walls are translucent, and the view is incredible. Trinidad is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Chaco Plains (Gran Chaco)
These plains are nicknamed "Green Hell", and this is a justified name. The plains of the Chaco are occupied by savannahs and tropical forests. Average temperatures here are 28º ... 30º, and there is very little rainfall. At night the temperature drops a lot. The plains are a paradise for hunters: their territory has preserved wildlife with a rich wildlife. Tourists to explore the Gran Chaco can visit numerous national parks.
Cathedral of Asuncion
One of the oldest buildings in Asuncion. The cathedral began to be built in 1561 by order of the Spanish king. It was erected on the ruins of a temple burned down due to a big fire. The cathedral combines several styles. Among them are Gothic, Baroque, Neoclassical and Moorish styles. Today it is one of the city's most popular attractions.
It is the official residence of the country's president and government. It is located in the city center on the banks of the Parana River. Construction began in 1857. European masters were engaged in decorating the palace. During the war, many figurines, mirrors, furniture and valuables were lost and had to be restored. Today, a light show is held near the palace in the evenings.
National University of Asuncion
One of the oldest universities in Paraguay and one of the best institutions of higher learning in all of Latin America. The educational institution was founded in 1889. It has 12 faculties, 6,200 teachers and 40,000 students. Among the graduates of the university are two presidents of Paraguay. One of them is still doing his job.
House of Independence
This is the house where the Declaration of Independence of Paraguay was proclaimed on May 18, 1811. It was built in 1772. Today it is a house-museum. It consists of 5 rooms: study, oratory, living room, bedroom and dining room. The museum offers guided tours. Among the exhibits are antique furniture, a sword, important documents, and portraits. Also near the house there is a yard and an alley.
One of the most interesting places in Asuncion is the village of Maka. This is a primitive settlement that was on the verge of extinction when the authorities paid attention to it. However, tourists and officials rarely visit there, so almost nothing has changed in the village. For visitors, residents will be happy to put on traditional feathers for an additional fee, and women can buy souvenirs that they make themselves.
Saltos del Monday waterfall
A waterfall on the Mondai River, located in the national park of the same name. It has rich flora and fauna. The area of the waterfall is 4 hectares, the height is 45 m, and the width is 120 m. The average annual temperature there is 21 °C. The waterfall consists of three main currents. Around it there is a beautiful park with walking paths. Tourists have picnics there.
Rio Paraguay River
The third largest and longest river on the continent. Its length is 2549 km. It is also one of the largest tributaries of the Parana. It divides Paraguay into two parts with its valley. To the west lies the dry and hot plain of the Gran Chaco, and to the east the wetter regions, where more than 90% of the country's population lives.
Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary
This is the Catholic Cathedral in Kaakupe. It is the center of pilgrimage for the Catholics of Paraguay. The shrine has the status of a minor basilica and is a national monument of the country. The first mention of the temple dates back to 1765. In 1883, the temple was repaired, and two years later the dome was completed. Already twice in the history of the cathedral it was visited by the Pope.
Silvio Pettirossi Airport
The airport is located in the capital of Paraguay, the city of Asuncion. This is the only airport in the capital. It is located 12 km from the city center and receives flights from 16 airlines, sometimes charter ones. Although the airport has only one terminal and one runway, it has all the necessary services. The passenger turnover of the airport is about 1 million people a year.
This is a large lake in the southeastern part of Paraguay. It is shallow, the maximum depth of the lake is 3 m. Its area is about 60 km². There are two cities on the shores of the lake. Once the water in it was considered healing, this is a very popular recreation area for local residents. But recently the lake has become polluted and loses its properties.