The artistic hub of Mendoza and a popular meeting place for locals, Plaza Espana offers a tranquil retreat, just a short stroll from the central Plaza Independencia. The striking centerpiece of Plaza Espana is a beautifully tiled fountain, overlooked by a series of mosaics depicting scenes from Argentina’s Spanish colonization.
Stroll around the grassy lawns, settle on one of the mosaic-tiled benches for a picnic lunch or visit on the weekends, when a lively artisan’s fair takes place and local musicians provide impromptu entertainment.
The highlight of Mendoza’s Iglesia de San Francisco complex is the Renaissance-style pink stucco basilica dating from 1875.
The Franciscan church replaced the original Jesuit structure that was destroyed by the devastating earthquake of 1861. Venerated throughout Mendoza, the church is the hallowed home of the miraculous Virgen del Carmen de Cuyo, patron saint of the liberating Andean Army.
The basilica also houses the tomb of the daughter of General San Martin, and is celebrated for its elaborate altar, Virgin’s chapel and priceless religious artifacts. The church is a National Historic Landmark and one of Mendoza’s most important features.