District of Itauguá, Paraguay - Polarsteps

Itauguá, Paraguay, population: about 90,000. Itauguá is 30 kilometers (18 miles) southeast of Asunción. Itauguá was founded in 1728. For some years, Itauguá has been one of the fastest-growing areas in Paraguay. Itauguá is famous for its pottery, architecture, and folk music. The name, Itauguá, came from the local indigenous language Guaraní. Itauguá Being a bedroom community of Asunción one would expect it to be primarily urban as are the other similar towns around Asunción, but no, Itauguá is urban, productive rural, and natural. And I must say it is in a beautiful area. The town was founded by the Spanish in the area where there had been numerous small camps beforehand. The Guaraní people had inhabited this area for countless years before that. The town grew from these small camps instead of around a central church, which was more common. The date itself is not exact, as no such record exists. A historian found an inscription on a beam in the church which read, "Built in 1766". It was in the 1960s that a month and day were chosen so the city would have a date for celebrating the city's anniversary. Throughout the 1700s, the growth rate was estimated to have been about 50 new inhabitants per year. Around 1800, the population was about 2796. Starting in 1811, the city created a grid system for the blocks and streets; prior to this time, they had only irregular paths. They also constructed the first 'serial housing' units for families. I'm not sure, but I think that refers to 'townhouse' style houses. Some of these original houses still exist, and some are museums and shops. In 1830, the original church was completely refurbished. Then in 1896, it underwent even further renovations which took 12 years to complete. The early 1900s saw a stagnation of the economy due to drought, a locust plague, and finally, the civil war in 1922. Finally, in about 1940, the mayor got things turned around and started developing and expanding the city, making many improvements. Itauguá's economy is largely dependent on agriculture, pottery/ceramics, manufacturing, and commercial business, with a growing adventure tourism industry, mostly related to pottery and ceramics. So, my impressions: While it may not have a central plaza with the church on one side and restaurants and shops on the other three sides, it is a very nice town sitting in a beautiful region. There are several large grocery stores/supermarkets, hospitals, and any other kind of shop you might want. And, it's only a short drive from the big city of Asunción.
  1. ChipW
  2. My South America Journey
  3. District of Itauguá