Metropolitan Cathedral - Catedral Metropolitana, Buenos Aires

4 out of 5 stars 30 Reviews

Calle Rivadavia s/n, 1004 Buenos Aires +54 11 4343-6272

Been here? Rate It!

hide
  • Plaza next to the Cathedral
    Plaza next to the Cathedral
    by fred98115
  • Exterior of Cathedral
    Exterior of Cathedral
    by fred98115
  • Interior Dome of Cathedral
    Interior Dome of Cathedral
    by fred98115
  • mtncorg's Profile Photo

    CATEDRAL METROPOLITANA

    by mtncorg Written Dec 12, 2004

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Built on the site of an earlier church dating to 1593, the Cathedral, itself, dates to 1752-1852 with a decorative 1911 refurbishment. Outside, the eternal flame of San Martin burns. Inside, the main nave leads to a glorious main altar with floors of Venetian marble. On the left side is the Santo Cristo de Buenos Aires Chapel containing a carving of Jesus dating to 1671. On the right side is the tomb of General Jose de San Martin draped with a huge Argentine flag. San Martin is the nation’s temporal saint – forgotten in his own lifetime by the anarchical Unitarian-Federalist struggles following his successful campaigns in the Wars of Independence. Here, in the Cathedral, Argentina tries to make it up to her hero in a way that outdoes all of those who are over in la Recoleta.

    Cathedral and the Eternal Flame of San Martin
    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Museum Visits
    • Religious Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Sonador3's Profile Photo

    Catedral Metropolitana

    by Sonador3 Updated May 23, 2004

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The original church stood on this site starting in 1593 and like so many other buildings, went through many different variations (due to shoddy construction and other reasons) before finally settling on it's current neo-classical design; concluded in 1911. The facade columns represent Jesus apostles, and the memorial contains the final resting place of General Jose de San Martin, General Guido, General Las Heras and the symbolic tombs of the unknown soldiers. The eternal flame (votive candle) is dedicated to General San Martin who is also known as the "Liberator of Argentina"?in other words, The MAN!!

    Weekdays 8am to 7pm, Saturday 9am to 12:30pm and again from 5pm to 7:30pm and Sundays from 9am to 2pm and again from 4pm to 7:30pm. Guided tours are available from 4pm to 7pm. Check out the changing of the guard, basically every 2 hours on the odd hour.

    The Met
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Budget Travel
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • fachd's Profile Photo

    Metropolitana Catedral

    by fachd Written Sep 12, 2007

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Catedral Metropolitana is a Catholic cathedral was finished in 1862. Inside the cathedral visitor will find the guarded mausoleum of Argentinean General Jose de San Martin. He was the liberator of Argentina from Spanish rule. He is the hero of Argentina. There are European artist paintings and sculptures from 18th century. The interior is of Baroque design. On the outside stood several of what I think similar to Corinthian columns.

    Mon-Frid: 8am – 7pm
    Sat: 9am - 12.30pm and 5pm – 7.30pm
    Sun: 9am – 2pm and 4pm – 7.30pm

    Metropolitana Catedral
    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Arts and Culture
    • Museum Visits

    Was this review helpful?

  • Dabs's Profile Photo

    Metropolitan Cathedral

    by Dabs Updated Apr 22, 2006

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    We wandered into the Metropolitan Cathedral by accident, it looked like an impressive building but it certainly didn't look like a cathedral from the outside, in fact from the description in the guidebook, it sounds like the original structure was built in 1745 and it wasn't designated a cathedral until 1836, almost a 100 years later.

    Inside, you'll want to find the tomb of General Jose de San Martin, the "Father of the Nation" who fought for South American freedom alongside Simon Bolivar. I happened to be there at the time of the changing of the guard, well, it wasn't really a changing as both the guards and the replacement guards all marched off together and the tomb was left unguarded. Seems kind of silly to have a tomb guarded if they all get up and leave ;-)

    A detail in the church that I thought was really pretty was the mosaic tile floor with a floral pattern.

    Metropolitan Cathedral Metropolitan Cathedral Mosaic tile floor Changing of the Guard Tomb of Jose de San Martin

    Was this review helpful?

  • barryg23's Profile Photo

    Buenos Aires Cathedral

    by barryg23 Updated Sep 10, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The cathedral on Plaza Mayo is one of the nicest and most important buildings in the city. From the outside it doesn´t resemble a cathedral, certainly not a European style one in any case, but inside it's ornately decorated and is a nice place to escape the noise and crowds on the plaza.

    It´s one of the many important buildings on Buenos Aires' main square and contains the tomb of perhaps Argentina's most celebrated historical figure, General San Martin, who helped liberate much of South America from Spanish rule. His tomb is guarded by two soldiers and is the main monument of interest in the church. The tombs of other notable Argentines are also found in the cathedral, as well as some impressive religious paintings.

    Cathedral on Plaza Mayo Interior of Cathedral

    Was this review helpful?

  • wadekorzan's Profile Photo

    See the soldiers at San Martin's tomb

    by wadekorzan Written Jan 18, 2004

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    General San Martin, the hero of Argentina, is buried at the Metropolitan Cathedral at Plaza de Mayo. His tomb is carefully guarded by 2 soldiers at all times when the cathedral is open, and these soldiers are regularly switched to give them a break. If your lucky you'll get to see the switch, it's quite a production!

    Was this review helpful?

  • wadekorzan's Profile Photo

    The Metropolitan Cathedral

    by wadekorzan Written Jan 12, 2004

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    On the outside, this cathedral looks more like a museum! It actually is quite similar to the Bourbon Palace in Paris. However, on the interior, you're in for a very nice treat. Walk inside, go straight on in, and about four columns in you'll get to the spot on the right where the tomb of General San Martin is located. San Martin is THE hero of Argentina. There's a picture of him in every school classroom, a street named after him in every city. He was known as the "Liberator of Argentina" and later he went on with O'Higgins from Chile to free much of the rest of South America from Spain's rule. Amusingly enough, he wasn't Catholic and so could not be buried IN the Metropolitan Cathedral. Therefore, his tomb is in a little chapel that was built on the cathedral itself. Two handsome guards in nicely pressed uniforms stand watch and don't mind being photographed at all. Try to catch them taking a peek at you--they're not supposed to move.

    The interior is in the baroque style, and the altar and many icons date back to the 18th century. Guided tours take place Monday through Friday at 1 PM, Saturdays at 11:30 AM, and Sundays at 10 AM. Meet inside just to the right, and verify hours before going because in Argentina, things change all the time!

    Metropolitan Cathedral

    Was this review helpful?

  • TheWanderingCamel's Profile Photo

    Pay homage to a hero

    by TheWanderingCamel Updated Sep 8, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Spanish Colonial architecture at one end, French-Italian at the other - the building on Plaza de Mayo are nothing is not eclectic so the Cathedral Metropolitana looking for all the world like a Greek temple should come as no great surprise. The facade - all Corinthian columns and neoclassical pediment - far more restrained than most of the city's churches - is the result of major rebuilding in the 19th century. I'm sure when building commenced in the 16th century, it didn't look anything like it does today.

    Whilst it is far more typically Spanish inside, with gilded columns and silver altars, the temple-like appearance is a fitting enough setting for the mausoleum that houses the tomb of the country's most revered hero, Jose de San Martin, who led the army of liberation where his black sarcophagus sits on a high plinth, swathed in an enormous national flag and guarded by ceremonially-garbed sentries and life-sized marble statues - it's all very grand. In actual fact, although it's accessed from inside the cathedral, the mausoleum lies outside the consecrated space of the building - San Martin's Freemason precluded him from burial within a Catholic church.

    The mausoleum sentries are dressed in the uniforms of San Martin's army. Across the other side of the Plaza, the building on the south-west corner is also guarded by soldiers in period uniforms. These are different - they look more 18th than 19th century for a start. No-one we asked could tell us who they were or what building they were guarding - I wonder if someone on VT can tell me. We caught their Changing of the Guard. Between them, the sentries at San Martin's tomb and the sentries guarding the Casa Rosada, you've got a pretty good chance of catching one or other of the ceremonies when you visit the Plaza.

    Guarding the hero .... A Greek temple? Grand interior ....but who are these guys guarding?

    Was this review helpful?

  • acemj's Profile Photo

    Metropolitan Cathedral

    by acemj Updated Nov 18, 2003

    4 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    When I first saw the Metropolitan Cathedral just off of Plaza de Mayo, I didn't realize that it was a cathedral. It looks more like a government building from the outside with its Greek columns and staid look. However, once inside, you'll be treated to an opulent and beautiful space. You'll also find the mausoleum of General José de San Martin who is regarded of the "Father of the Nation" (he actually helped liberate Peru and Chile as well). The building dates to 1745, but it wasn't named a cathedral until 1836.

    Was this review helpful?

  • DPando's Profile Photo

    City Cathedral

    by DPando Written Apr 20, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    On the same Plaza de Mayo there is this neoclassical building ...great architecture ..its is the main chatedral in the city.... i didnt see gorgeous ones like i use to see in Europe but this was really nice and could be whatever apart a chatedral.... its on the right side of the square looking to 9 de Julio Avenue

    Was this review helpful?

  • GentleSpirit's Profile Photo

    Catedral Metropolitana de Buenos Aires

    by GentleSpirit Updated Mar 8, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I was looking around for the Cathedral and just couldn't find anything that looked like a Cathedral, no giant dome, no large belltower, no rousing spires. The Catedral Metropolitana looks more like a museum or a bank from the front, so you really don't know what to expect. The Spanish colonial style, that would have been perfectly fitting in their neighborhood its in, was cast aside in one of the many renovations to the present temple. Somehow they chose a neo-Classical facade.

    Once you go inside the Cathedral is more ornate than you might expect, though still considerably less than the usual I would say.

    One of the side chapels holds the remains of General Jose de San Martin, the leader of the fight for Independence from Spain. He is considered one of the fathers of South American independence and is special to the histories of Argentina, Peru and Chile. Somehow, General San Martin soured on the revolution and retired in Paris, from whence his bones were returned to Argentina in 1880.

    Interestingly, like many of the leaders of the independence movements of North and South America, San Martin was a Freemason.

    Catedral Metropolitana
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Religious Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Frisbeeace's Profile Photo

    Metropolitan Cathedral

    by Frisbeeace Written May 26, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Buenos Aires first chapel was built in 1585 and was consecrated as a Cathedral in 1622. Its present building was begun in the 17th century, along Renaissance line, but wasn't completed until 1829, when its Neoclassic facade was built. The Cathedral houses a number of works of art including the 18th century colonial altar.

    The Cathedral also keeps the flags that Argentine troops captured in different battles and wars. On its right hand aisle, the San Martin mausoleum stands together with the tomb to Unknown soldier. This part of the Cathedral is permanently guarded by the Granaderos.

    Metropolitan Cathedral

    Was this review helpful?

  • Luchonda's Profile Photo

    Metropolitan Cathedral

    by Luchonda Updated Oct 8, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    "SALVUM FAC POPULUM TUUM", a text on the walls of the Metropolitan Cathedral and the place where the great liberator San Martin is burried.
    The cathedral itself reminds me at the "Pantheon building" in Paris, France and one of the proofs that a lot of architects building Buenos Aires were inspired by the french architecture in general.
    The twelve pillons in the front symbolizes the twelve apostels of the bible

    Metropolitan Cathedral San Martin thomb Elternal Flame
    Related to:
    • Castles and Palaces
    • Museum Visits
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • mindcrime's Profile Photo

    like a museum

    by mindcrime Updated Jun 30, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Catedral Metropolitana de Buenos Aires overlook Plaza de Mayo square and it didn’t look like a cathedral to me the first time I saw the greek style columns outside :) The cathedral was full of people when I got inside, not locals but some noisy tourists with cameras etc I felt I was inside a non organized museum…

    It’s the main church in the capital and its origins go back to the 16th century when in 1580 the first building was built here and it was rebuilt many times since then (many times from the beginning because many parts of the church collapsed!)

    The interior is more interesting for me with strange decoration (a combination of baroque and renaissance styles) and I spend some time looking the sculptures and the paintings (many frescoes all over the walls and the ceiling).

    In the cathedral you can find also the Mausoleum of San Martin, the famous general. it’s open daily from 8:00am (weekends 9:00)
    tours in spanish from Monday to Friday at 11:30am

    Metropolitan Cathedral of Buenos Aires interior of the Cathedral interior of the Cathedral interior of the Cathedral interior of the Cathedral
    Related to:
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • spidermiss's Profile Photo

    Caterdal Metropolitana

    by spidermiss Written Feb 28, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This 19th Century cathedral with its neoclassical architecture is situated by the Plaza de Mayo. Inside the church has the Venetian interior features and the main attractions is San Martin's mausoleum which is permenantly guarded.

    Catedral Metropolitana, Buenos Aires Catedral Metropolitana, Buenos Aires Inside the Catedral Metropolitana, Buenos Aires Inside the Catedral Metropolitana, Buenos Aires San Martin's Tomb, Catedral Metropolitana
    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Arts and Culture
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

Instant Answers: Buenos Aires

Get an instant answer from local experts and frequent travelers

40 travelers online now

Comments

Hotels Near Metropolitan Cathedral - Catedral Metropolitana
3.5 out of 5 stars
0.1 miles away
Show Prices
3.5 out of 5 stars
0.1 miles away
Show Prices

View all Buenos Aires hotels