18th Century galleon discovered in Puerto Madero open to the public

12:29 PM Sandra Gutrejde 5 Comments

The Government of the City of Buenos Aires has inaugurated the walkways that allow visitors to admire the 18th century Spanish galleon unearthed in Puerto Madero on December 28, 2008. The old ship will be exhibited until July 5, 2009, when it will be buried again to prevent it from being destroyed.

Argentine builders stumbled across the wreck of this 18th century Spanish galleon while digging the foundations for a riverside high-rise building in Buenos Aires.They have discovered several canons and well-preserved earthenware jars that were probably used to store olive oil.

The remains of the galleon were found on a building site and archeologists from Buenos Aires city government think the boat was probably shipwrecked some 300 years ago. This 18th-century Spanish galleon was one of thousands that carried goods across the Atlantic when Argentina was a Spanish colony.

The 35 meters long walkway in a horseshoe shape allows the public to appreciate the vessel from every angle.

Entrance is free, but visitors must register to make the visit. Click here to complete the reservation form.

Location: Rosario Vera Penaloza and Juana Manso, Puerto Madero
Monday to Friday, 12.00 noon to 6.00 pm
Saturdays and Sundays, 10.00 am to 6.00 pm
Guided visits:
In Spanish: every day
In English: Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, 3.00 pm to 5.00 pm
In Portuguese: Monday to Friday 11.00 am to 1.00 pm, and Saturdays 3.00 pm to 5.00 pm.

The visits are canceled in case of rain. People will have to register again in this case.
For security reasons, children under 5 are not allowed to visit.
An ID of the main applicant and his/her companion must be presented on the day of the visit, plus the confirmation email.

More information: National Geographic website (in Spanish only)

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  1. Will it really be buried again in July? That sounds pretty crazy... do you mind if I ask where that is stated and what the reasoning behind it is?



  2. Hi Alan
    That is stated in the National Geographic site, if you read the tab along the reservation form, it says: "... pronto el barco volvera a enterrarse para eviar su destruccion".
    This is something an archaeologist must be able to explain better, but I assume that, after being buried for so long, once in contact with the air the remains of the ship start to deteriorate very quickly.
    It doesn't say if the ship will be buried in the same site or moved to another place. There's a documentary tonight May 31st, 8 PM at National Geographic Channel, hopefully they will explain this too

  3. Ah, I must have missed that part.

    It still seems strange to me. If they can dig up viking ships in Norway that are 1000s of years old and have them on display, then it would seem that one a few hundred years old shouldn't be such a problem.

    Just seems like something is off to me...

    Thanks for the info!


  4. Ah, I missed the documentary too. Did you happen to see it, and if so, did they explain anything about the reburial?

    I'm not in BA at the moment, so will have to wait for a while until I can get to one of the guided tours...

  5. I missed the documentary the other day too but I hope to catch one of the re-runs. Now I found more information on the National Geographic website:
    "El documental también contará por qué esta valiosa pieza no puede permanecer en el lugar en que fue encontrada" (The documentary will tell why this valuable piece cannot stay at the site where it was found) "...pronto será trasladada a su nuevo destino para su conservación" (it will soon be moved to a new destination for its preservation).
    I guess we'll have to watch the show to know the answers.