Although Asuncion lacks heavyweight tourist attractions like distinctive geographical landmarks, sandy beaches or significant monuments, it has its own kind of charm for those on holiday in Paraguay.
The downtown area may have seen better days but there is a resilient romance to the neglected colonial and beaux-arts buildings, and some interesting museums and monuments to check out. The suburbs lack the old-world colonial aesthetic of the downtown area but they do boast shopping malls, good restaurants and a fun nightlife, especially in the northeast towards Villa Morra.
Sightseeing in Asuncion is best done on a sunny day on a walking tour of the downtown area. Popular sights include the Versailles-style Palacio de Gobierno, the National Cathedral, the Casa Viola Museum and the beautiful Botanical Gardens. The Mercado Quatro is a whole neighbourhood of market space and is a great place to buy souvenirs in Asuncion.
The political, cultural and economic heart of Paraguay, Asuncion is a lively city and worth a visit for travellers in the region. It also makes a great base for excursions to popular attractions such as Ciudad del Este and Iguazu Falls, located only 201 miles (324km) away, near Paraguay's border with Argentina and Brazil.