The Jesuit missions of the Guaranis comprise five missionary stations in the tropical rainforest of Argentina, and one in Brazil. They were established by the Jesuits for their missionary activities among the Guaraní Native Americans in the 17th and 18th centuries. The ruins of these Jesuit missions were together inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site during the 8th session of the World Heritage Committee when it met in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on 29 October to 2 November 1984.
What to See in the Jesuit Missions of the Guaranis
The five Jesuit missions, in various states of disrepair and conservation, are São Miguel das Missões in Brazil, and San Ignacio Mini, Nuestra Señora de Santa Ana, Nuestra Señora de Loreto and Santa María la Mayor in Argentina. You should visit each of these, as they each have a different layout, appearance and are in a different state of preservation.
Photos of the Jesuit Missions of the Guaranis
Ruins of Sao Miguel das Missoes, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
Author: temponotempo (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)
Ruins of San Ignacio Mini, Argentina
Author: Dario Alpern (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)
Facade of Sao Miguel das Missoes
Author: Leandro Kibisz (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.5)
The four Jesuit missions within Argentina are located in Misiones Province, on the narrow strip between Paraguay and Brazil, while São Miguel das Missões is at Rio Grande do Sul in Brazil.
World Heritage Site Inscription Details
São Miguel das
Missões: S28 32 36.0 W54 15 57.0
San Ignacio Mini: S27 15 00.0 W55 31 00.0
Nuestra Señora de Santa Ana: S27 23 00.0 W55 33 58.0
Nuestra Señora de Loreto: S27 30 00.0 W55 32 00.0
Santa María la Mayor: S27 33 00.0 W55 20 00.0
Inscription Year: 1984
Type of Site: Cultural / Natural / Mixed
Inscription Criteria: IV
There are similarities between the Jesuit Missions of the Guaranis with the Jesuit Missions of the Chiquitos, which are also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, in Bolivia.
View Jesuit Missions of the Guaranis in a larger map
Visiting this Site
Your base for visiting this World Heritage Site is Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina. You should find your accommodation in Buenos Aires, and then get your hotel to help you make arrangements for visiting the sights in Argentina. I recommend that you base yourself in Buenos Aires rather than a smaller Argentine city, as you will have more options here. There will be plenty of tour packages to choose from, according to the amount of time you have in your hands.
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