Rosario: Pleasant, Authentic & Worth a Weekend

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Rosario, in the province of Sante Fe, may not be a big-name tourist destination in Argentina, but it’s worth having a look at if you’re sick of the Buenos Aires grind, on the way to Cordoba or want to take a little detour on the way to Iguazu Falls.

Rosario isn’t as gorgeous as Mendoza, nor will it take your breath away like Bariloche, but it vies with La Plata to be considered Argentina’s second city.

What Rosario does offer is culture, history and nightlife for fun-loving travelers or study abroad students.

A Riverfront City

Argentina’s third largest city, with a population of over 1.3 million people. Rosario is a port city situated on the Paraña River. 

The smallish population and position on the water ensure that the ‘Rosarinos,’ as the locals are known, are a bit more laid back and outdoorsy than their Buenos Aires counterparts.

There are some lovely walks along the Rosario’s 15k costanera, or riverfront, where visitors can get some exercise, sip some mate and gaze upon the water.

An important Rosario monument is the National Flag Memorial, with its ornate tower overlooking an expansive courtyard, all of which is easily accessible on foot and offers great photo opportunities, or just a nice place to mill around with the locals.

Monumento a la Bandera or Flag monument in Rosario, Argentina
Paying tribute to Argentina’s national flag – the Monumento a la Bandera

The abundance of theaters and museums, including the fine arts museum, Museo de Bellas Artes Juan B. Castagnino. The colorful Museum of Contemporary Art of Rosario (MACRo) along the rambla in a converted silo.

The city is also the birth place to some Argentine luminaries such as painter, Antonio Berni, athlete, Lionel Messi, and revolutionary Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara (Lynch!) .

On the activists’ tourist circuit is latter’s first home at Entre Rios 480 (cross street, Urquiza).

In 2008, in the aptly-named Plaza Che Guevara, the city also inaugurated a four meter bronze statue of him, made with the old keys of citizens from across the country.

The interior of a historic building, Rosario Argentina

Rosario is also known within Argentina as a fun party town, due to its young population and wide variety of bars and clubs.

Porteños from Buenos Aires will even hop over to Rosario on a weekend just to go clubbing for a night or two, although rising crime in recent years has caused internal tourism to slow.

The waterfront in Rosario, Argentina
The costanera, or waterfront in Rosario, Argentina

The city on the river is also reputed to be the home to the best looking girls in Argentina — quite a claim considering many Argentines believe that their country has the ‘best looking women in the world.’

Men traveling with wives or girlfriends should probably just keep their eyes on the floor at all times (or wear dark sunglasses).

Getting There from Buenos Aires: Train, Bus & Car

A freight as seen from the pier of Rosario

Perfect for a four-day trip, or even a long weekend, Rosario is relatively close to Buenos Aires, and it’s inexpensive to get there.


A micro (long distances bus) ride from the Retiro station costs under US$10 for a semi-cama seat (reclines to 45 degrees), and a bit more for cama (fully reclinable) and takes between three to four hours.

There are a multitude of companies offering services at all hours of the day.

You can compare prices here and purchase tickets online, or head into the Retiro bus station in Buenos Aires (Av. Antártida Argentina and Calle 10) and ask around at the different company stands.


Train lovers will be happy to know it is once again it is possible to take the train to Rosario from Buenos Aires.

It costs under US$5 and also leaves from Retiro train station.

It takes a little longer than the bus, about six hours. Bring snacks as the train doesn’t have a reputation of being reliable.

A statue in downtown Rosario, Argentina
Rosario is full of museums, galleries and scenic walks

Where to Stay in Rosario

Rosario has hotels scattered throughout the city, including corporate chains, budget-friendly options, hostels, and family-owned hotels.

City Center

The city center features several corporate or chain hotels, often preferred by business travelers due to their amenities and proximity to the city’s commercial and financial districts.

Boutique hotels in the city center, which may offer a mix of comfort and personalized service.

Parque España Area

  • This area, located along the Paraná River, offers a mix of upscale and boutique hotels. These hotels often provide beautiful views of the river and easy access to Parque España, a scenic park.

For budget travelers, there are several well-known hostels to choose from in Rosario.

A tranquil option 15 minutes by foot from downtown is Posada Juan Ignacio, which has a garden with a pool and bar.

La Casona de Don Jaime is a popular hostel with two locations to choose from.

Both are situated centrally, close to both the bus station and downtown area, as well as the more attractive tourist zones, with a bed in a 6-person dorm costing only about $6 a night.

They are also the only hostels in Rosario with the Hosteling International mark of approval.

A hip alternative is the nearby Cool Raúl Hostel.

Alternative being the operative word here – this ‘rockin” hostel is geared towards fun freewheelers looking for an escape from the everyday routine.

Another option further away from town, near Florida beach, is Soles Boutique Hostel.

It’s artfully decorated with antiques and has a nice garden.

For a private room at about twice the price Casa Be Suites is a slick option near Independence Park and Newell Old Boys’ with sustainable practices in place.

Those traveling by car should note they don’t have parking though.

A family or a group of friends might want to book a reasonably-priced apartment with a view of the river. from Parana

-Dan Colasimone

additional photos: Ramón

La Casona de Don Jaime 2

San Lorenzo 1530
Rosario, Santa Fe
Tel:  +54 (0341) 530-2020

Casa Be Suites

Avenida Pellegrini 3675

Rosario, Santa Fe