More ruins in San Ignacio
San Ignacio Travel Blog› entry 23 of 31 › view all entries
After the wetness that was Iguazu, we headed to the small town of San Ignacio to see the best preserved of the many old Jesuit Missions in the area. The Jesuits once had little townlets strewn across the pampas area that now form the border area between Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay, before in the 1780´s the Spanish decided that they were a bit to big for their britches and sent them packing. While the official line at San Ignacio was that the Jesuits helped the local aboriginal people organise themselves into farming communities that benifited everyone, it's seemed like a thinly disguised spin for what is now known as slavery.
The ruins in themselves were a bit too run down to really make much sense of, but it was a tranquil place with creepers growing up the old stone walls. There is even one tree that is called the "tree with the heart of stone" which has grown over a stone pillar and now totally engulfs it. There is apparently some conservation work being undertaken to strip the vines and moss off the stonework, as it is slowly destroying it. Unfortunately the raw stonework is a bit of a non-event and without the vegetation to give it a lost world feel it will just be a pile of rubble.