Pope Francis, formerly Archbishop Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, was born in the Flores neighbourhood. Learn about his life, his work and his many passions by taking the city's free papal bus tours.
When? Saturdays at 3pm. Sundays, and public holidays at 9am and 3pm. Duration: approximately 3 hours.
Meeting point: Basílica San José de Flores, Av. Rivadavia 6950
Free! Not cancelled in the event of rain.
It takes in the Basílica San José de Flores, where Pope Francis, known locally as Padre Jorge, embarked on his religious career at the age of 17, and offers visitors a peek into the house where he was born, places where he studied, taught, worshipped and officiated, as well as colourful stories about his humble character, his passion for San Lorenzo football club, and above all his religious teachings and devotion to the poor.
Visitors will pass by the schools where Pope Francis studied, and the Vicaría de Flores where he was ordained as bishop in 1992, before the bus moves on to the Devoto neighbourhood to visit the prison where Pope Francis held mass and washed prisoners' feet, and the Seminario Metropolitano de Buenos Aires, where he made his decision to become a Jesuit.
San Nicolás and Monserrat
The bus then heads to the city centre, visiting the Metropolitan Cathedral in the Plaza de Mayo, where for 20 years Jorge Bergoglio resided and officiated mass. Visitors will also pass the Del Salvador church, where he was Professor of Literature and Psychology in the 1960s, the Universidad del Salvador, a Jesuit institution he ran until 1975, and a number of Jesuit churches, such as the Iglesia Regina Martyrum, the Iglesia de San Ignacio de Loyola and the Iglesia y Convento de San Francisco.
Heading back to Francis's native Flores neighbourhood, the tour passes the Basílica de San Carlos y María Auxiliadora, where he was baptized in 1936, and the stadium of the Club Atlético San Lorenzo de Almagro, the football club that Pope Francis follows with a passion.
Note that this tour goes ahead in the event of rain.
Should you be interested in attending a mass in one of the city’s churches, the following website has information on all parishes, addresses and mass times in the city: http://www.horariosdemisa.com.ar/english/index.html.
Learn more about guided tours in Buenos Aires.