Known for its large baroque church and fine restored Franciscan missionary carvings, this town, whose name means "big dog" in Guarani, is generally visited in combination with a trip to scenic Lake Ypacarai or the Cordillera (hills) region—one of the most beautiful areas in Paraguay. The 12 Stations of the Cross line a pleasant path up the hill behind Yaguaron to a small chapel—there is a good view of the surrounding countryside. From Yaguaron, you can take a short drive through the Cordillera, with stops at Chololo Falls, a lovely group of small waterfalls, and Caacupe, home of the Basilica de Nuestra Senora de los Milagros, a huge church built for the Pope's visit in the late 1980s (and thus now accorded the title of basilica).
Do go in December or January if you're interested in festivals. There are several, and they interfere with normal touring. The annual Fiesta de la Inmaculada Concepcion, for which nearly a million Paraguayans make a pilgrimage to the basilica, is held on 8 December. Also, if you are traveling during Holy Week (usually in March or April), expect interruptions and delays. Everything comes to a standstill at these times. Allow a full day to this area from Asuncion. Yaguaron is 25 mi/40 km southeast of Asuncion.
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