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Argentina. Mar del plata



In the middle of the eighteenth century the Jesuit monks established a mission in this area which now bears the name of "Laguna de los Padres" (Lake of the Monks).They were the first European men who tried to settle in this region, building a chapel with living quarters and a trading post. They succeeded in gathering a small group of Indians together, thus making the area known to the white world. Now there is a smaller reproduction of this mission where documents related to its history are exhibited. Next we will visit the "Jose Hernandez" museum, which is named after the archetypical gaucho who was the author of the classic Argentinean poetry book "Martin Fierro". This poet and author first came in contact with country life and the activities of the gauchos while living here on his uncle's ranch (estancia). The landscape is typical of this area: rolling hills dotted by many farms and small ranches. Along the road from the lake to "Sierra de los Padres" (Monks' Hills) there are recreation facilities; small truck farms with hot houses for growing winter flowers. Once there, we discover a modern residential area of beautiful homes, restaurants, and a golf course with magnificent views of the valley bellow. In addition there is a traditional general store "la pulperia", which was a social gathering point for the gauchos at sunset.