Like nearly everywhere we´ve been in Paraguay, Encarnación is along a river and is a border town (with Argentina).
While hosting a pretty city center plaza, the main draw to Encarnación is its nearby Jesuit settlement ruins from the 1700s. I visited one (the largest), Trinidad, Thursday morning before we headed to Argentina.
Founded in the early 1700s by Jesuit misionaries, the settlement of Trinidad lasted for over 60 years and, at its peak, was home to over 4000 indigenous natives in additional to the Jesuits from Europe themselves. The entire settlement now in ruins, those of the large, main church were truly remarkable.
My guide gave me great information about the history of the place, and the way the misionaries would combine local lore and imagery with those of European Christians. Unfortunately, they got too big for their britches, and stopped paying taxes (and any attention for that matter) to the Spanish king. The Jesuits were eventually recalled back to Europe, ending their major influence in the region.
That afternoon, Tim and I said goodbye to Paraguay for good and headed across the border to Posadas, Argentina, and on a bus overnight for Córdoba.