Rosario, a city in the province of Santa Fe, is Argentina’s second or third largest city (there’s much debate on whether Rosario or Cordoba is the bigger city). The city is located northwest of Buenos Aires and on the massive River Paraná.
Rosario's claims to fame include the city being the birthplace of the revolutionary Che Guevara, the talented footballing genious Lionel Messi, and the nation’s attractive flag.
Whether you´re in town for a few days, a few weeks to learn Spanish or get TEFL-certified, or are here to stay for an undetermined time, here are 8 reasons to visit Rosario while you are in Argentina:
1. An excellent representation of Argentina
There’s this misconception that in Argentina, aside from BA, towns and cities live a gaucho lifestyle. Yes, there are definitely many towns and villages that are still very much gaucho, but Rosario is an excellent representation of Argentina as a whole. It has no touristic edge, making it a more cultural and authentic city than Buenos Aires, and an awesome example of what city life in Argentina is really like.
2. Rosario is cheaper than Buenos Aires
Want to extend your stay in Argentina but you’re worried about costs? Come to Rosario, it’s way cheaper than BA. From accommodation, to public transportation, to food, to nightlife, you will find that you will save a significant amount of money in Rosario.
3. Learn Spanish faster
It’s almost impossible to properly learn Spanish in a city like Buenos Aires. With an enormous amount of tourists and foreigners from all over the world, you end up speaking your mother tongue and not gaining any Spanish speaking skills. In Rosario however, you will begin to speak like an Argentine in no time. The fact that Rosario has fewer foreigners makes it a prime destination to pick up another language if that’s your goal. While you’re here, take Spanish classes with Spanish in Rosario. They’ll help you acquire basic Spanish speaking skills so that you can handle yourself in any situation, whether it be in a supermarket, a pharmacy, the bus station, or a night out at a bar, you’ll find yourself maneuvering around Spanish-speaking cities like a pro. On top of learning Spanish, you will be introduced to a tight-knit family with weekly scheduled enjoyable events such as a traditional asado, a night out at a bar, or an organized soccer game every Tuesday evening.
4. Rosario isn’t your typical concrete jungle
Rosario takes full advantage of its riverside location. Although Rosario is very much a city, one thing it has that many cities don’t is nature. You can admire its beautiful natural scenery by walking along its beautiful coastal area where you’ll find boardwalks and plentiful riverfront bars. Explore its abundant amount parks like Parque de la Independencia or Parque Urquiza. Or go cruising through the river Parana in kayak or sailboat. Across the river Parana, you can find numerous little islands with white sandy beaches, flora and fauna, and an easy-going atmosphere.
5. Its lively nightlife
If you like to party, do it here. There are a plethora of awesomely cool bars and extravagant boliches to check out. Rosario is definitely a college town, so you won’t be disappointed. You have so many options of places bars and nightclubs to visit that it’s almost overwhelming. Still want to party after all the boliches close at 5am or 6am? Check out an after boliches, they’re open until 9am. Are you up for it?
I can’t stress this one enough. The locals here are the freakin’ best. They are the most hospitable people I have ever met. As a foreigner you’ll most likely find it super easy to engage in a conversation with a Rosarino; they are extremely friendly and approachable people. Porteños (people from Buenos Aires) are used to foreigners and therefore might not be as interested in you and why you’re in Argentina, but Rosarinos want to talk to you, they want to invite you out to have a drink with friends and even an invite you to an asado, reason being that there just aren't too many visitors here like in Buenos Aires. They are curious about you and want you to feel at home here in their beautiful city.
7. A plethora of attractions and activities
Rosario is home to quite a few interesting attractions. Some include, Che Guevara’s first home, the National Flag monument, the Planetarium, many historical plazas, and various museums. Take the Rosario Free Tour while you’re here. They meet every Saturday at 11:30am at the Old Customs House on Maipu Street and take you around the city. The tour is given in English and in Spanish, and it’s an entertaining and informative tour you won’t regret to take!
Aside from attractions, Rosario has numerous activities to offer to its visitors. Examples include: skydiving, kayaking, horseback riding, sailboat rides, tango classes, and more.
8. The girls
This one is for the guys. Rosario is allegedly home to the most beautiful women in the country. Talk to any Argentino about Rosario and the first thing they will say is, “Did you know Rosario is where the most beautiful women in Argentina are found?”
Since I am a straight female, I can’t say much about this topic, but I recommend you to come see for yourself.
Have I convinced you yet? Take my advice, come to Rosario. I can promise you that you won’t be disappointed. If you really want to get to know Argentina and its exquisite culture, this city is perfect place for you.
- Vanessa Galban
English Professor in Rosario, Argentina.