The graceful, pink-brick Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception stands at the south end of Plaza Moreno, the geographic center of the city and the spot where the Piedra Fundacional (La Plata's Founding Stone) was laid in 1882. The neo-Gothic structure was inspired by cathedrals in Amiens and Cologne but includes local touches like gargoyles in the shape of condors and jabalíes (a kind of wild boar). Construction began in 1884, but the cathedral was still lacking its soaring twin spires at its 1932 inauguration. They were eventually completed in 1999, as part of a major restoration, along with the monumental stained-glass rosette window and a museum, located in the crypt, documenting the cathedral's history. From the museum, guides escort you (in an elevator) to two lookouts in the eastern tower for fabulous views over La Plata, the western tower (which contains a carillon of 25 bronze bells), and the cathedral's spindly buttresses. Many guides will add brief explanations in English to these Spanish-language tours; large English-language posters in the tower contain similar information.
Calle 14 between Calles 51 and 53, La Plata, Buenos Aires, 1900, Argentina