La Plata, Argentina, the capital of the province of Buenos Aires. It is situated near the south shore of the Río de La Plata, in the east-central part of the country. Ensenada, five miles (8 km) north, is La Plata's port; it can accommodate oceangoing vessels. The city's economy is based on the processing of products for export. Important industries include oil refining, meat packing, flour milling, and the manufacture of tiles and cement. Oil, refrigerated meat products, and cereals are the main exports.
La Plata was laid out in 1882 in a pattern of squares cut by wide diagonal avenues. The city has a natural-history museum, an astronomical laboratory, a zoo, and one of Argentina's national universities.