Tierra Santa: Buenos Aires' Christian Theme Park

There are tons of tourist attractions to visit in Buenos Aires: La Casa Rosada, aka the Pink House, where the president works; the San Telmo fair, which takes place every Sunday; the quaint streets of Palermo Viejo; and the city's many parks, to name just a few options. But travelers hungry for something a little more unusual should consider going farther afield, all the way to the coast of the Rio de la Plata at the northern end of the city.

There, in a seven-hectare string of parks known as Costañera Norte, sits Tierra Santa, Buenos Aires' very own Christian theme park. Tierra Santa offers a unique mix of religious reverence and kitschy entertainment that cannot be found anywhere else in the city.

What to See There

Tierra Santa is reportedly modeled on the city of Jerusalem as it looked 2,000 years ago. As a result, you can see park employees walking around the park in full Roman, Christian, or Jewish attire. The most entertaining attractions (for the non-believers at least) are the sound and light shows spread throughout the park.

Witness the creation of the world, from "let there be light" to Adam and Eve, at the Creation show. In addition to fun light and sound effects, the show also has lasers (lasers!) and kitsch animatronic animals to complete the picture. Even if you don't speak Spanish, we guarantee you'll get the gist of it; the show is not trying to be subtle.

Creation Show Tierra Santa Buenos Aires

The most impressive attraction at Tierra Santa is undoubtedly the Resurrection. At set times in the day, a 60-foot statue of Jesus Christ rises out of a fake mountain. The statue features a red LED heart on his chest, and the Resurrection show is accompanied by music and special effect lighting.

Other shows include the Manger with its hundreds of life-size figurines and the Last Supper. Visitors can also watch a belly-dancing show, eat Arabic food or pizza and check out a small replica of the Wailing Wall.

As an added bonus, Tierra Santa is located near one of Buenos Aires' airports, and airplanes fly low near the park during take-offs and landings. What better backdrop to watch a 60-foot-tall Jesus rise out of the earth?

The one thing Tierra Santa doesn't have in its religious hodge-podge are any rides or roller coasters. Visitors can, however, join one of the processions that travel through the park or join one of the workshops taught every day--though these workshops are mostly aimed at children.

How to Get There

Tierra Santa is located at Avenue Rafael Obligado 5790. Costanera Norte. Visitors can use the 28, 33, 37, 42, 45, 107 y 160 buses to get there, or take a taxi.

When to Go

Several of Tierra Santa's attractions are outdoors, so it's best to visit when the weather is pleasant. In winter (March to December), the park is open from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Fridays and 12:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. In summer (January and February) the park is open from 12:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and holidays.

Sam Harrison is a writer based in Buenos Aires.