AllBlacks could get Argentine travel shock

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James Mortimer     21 Sep 2012     Getty Images

New Zealand last visited Argentina in 2006, a region that was very much a final frontier in terms of visits for the All Blacks. 

While it may not be as lengthy a voyage when the All Blacks Originals left in 1905 for England onboard the Rimutaka, stopping at Montevideo and Tenerife before arriving in Plymouth - it is still a daunting trip considering Argentina is only in their first year of the competition.

La Plata, literally translated 'The Silver' is a city of much history and culture, was founded by Dardo Rocha in 1882.

The capital city of the Province of Buenos Aires, the greater metropolitan area now exceeds 700,000.

A painstakingly designed city, from above the historical masterpiece looks like a novice driver's dream map, with electric lighting coming online in La Plata in 1884, the first city in Latin America to gain such technology.

The All Blacks would also be well advised to visit the former Parroquia Nuestra Señora de los Dolores, now the Cathedral of La Plata, the largest Roman Catholic church in South America with spires reaching just over 360 feet.

Culture shock sometimes is merely the adjustment of time zones, but of late the All Blacks have found they are having to be aware of how differing cultures operate - and have been advised by All Blacks Manager Darren Shand to be open to the new world.

Visits to Hong Kong and Japan of late have backed by trips to Brisbane, Port Elizabeth, Cardiff, Dublin, Edinburgh and London in the last two years.

The infamous Spanish siesta, which is 'practiced' in Argentina, takes some getting used to as often shops will close mid-afternoon.

As Shand told the NZ Herald, even booking dinner could be a bit different,

"I've been trying to book some restaurants for about 7 o'clock and they all say we don't open till 10," Shand said.

The All Blacks leave for La Plata from Auckland on Saturday.

"It's more about understanding what you're going into," Shand said.

"A Spanish (speaking) country is very different to our way and I guess it's having empathy for a completely different environment."

"Things will operate completely differently...and we just have to be prepared for that."

As is typical custom for All Blacks touring teams, the side will be allowed to take in the sights when not training.