The Buenos Aires Metropolitan Cathedral is an iconic and historically important structure in the center of the capital city. Visiting this cathedral is one of the best things to do if you enjoy taking a glimpse into local culture and history. The church is located in the central part of the city near Plaza de Mayo.
Besides being the central Catholic Church in Buenos Aires, it is also the burial place of General de San Martin, who is often referred to as the Father of the Nation. He fought with Simon Bolivar in Argentina, Chile, and Peru in an effort to liberate the nation of Argentina. The body of General de San Martin (for whom a large plaza is named in the city) was moved to the cathedral in 1880 during a time when it was crucially important to signal a need for the unification of the Argentine people. It also happened to be right around the time when Buenos Aires was made the official capital of the country after years of civil war and domestic tensions. The Buenos Aires Cathedral has religious, cultural, and political significance for the people of Argentina. If you are planning a trip to this area, you should definitely make it a point to pay a visit to the Catedral Metropolitana de Buenos Aires.
The original structure of this great church was built in 1745, but it was not designated a cathedral of the Catholic Church until 1836. At this time, the façade, which was constructed in the Spanish colonial style, was enhanced with carvings that told the story of Jacob and his son Joseph. The architecture and amazing attention to detail in the carvings and overall exterior of the Buenos Aires Metropolitan Cathedral are impressive to say the least, but there are many other treasures to unearth inside it. One of the greatest of these is the tomb of the unknown soldier who fought for Argentine independence. There is an eternal flame that represents the commitment of the Argentine people to never forget what it took to gain independence.
There are also several ornate and extremely impressive chapels inside the Catedral Metropolitana de Buenos Aires. They contain a wide variety of statuary and impressive Catholic art. One interesting fact is that one of the chapels inside the Buenos Aires Cathedral (on the east side) contains a truly amazing statue of Jesus of Nazareth that has an inscription that reads “Santo Cristo del Gran Amor,” which translates in English as the Holy Christ of Great Love. A wealthy Argentine soccer player whose family had disappeared donated this gorgeous statue to the church. He had sworn that if they were ever to be found that he would donate a grand statue to the church. He made good on his promise in 1978 and the statue has remained there ever since. The statues of the Virgin Mary and the Holy Trinity, the Mausoleum of General de San Martin, and the beautiful frescoes that adorn the walls and ceilings of the Catedral Metropolitana de Buenos Aires are all features of this attraction that you should make a point of seeing. It is free to get in to see the beautiful Buenos Aires Metropolitan Cathedral and the midnight mass on Christmas Eve is a special experience if you are in town around the holidays.
In a city that offers lots of amazing attractions in terms of centuries-old buildings and wonderful architecture, the Buenos Aires Cathedral is one of the most enduring and beautiful.