The simple farm life, horseback riding through the vineyards, lunch like the locals in the large market hall in the harbour and enjoy beautiful sunsets. Uruguay is probably not the first country that comes to mind when you think of Latin America. Nevertheless, it is an absolute must to visit this country, because it is a beautiful and above all versatile country. In 5 tips I will take you to Uruguay.
1. Colonia del Sacremento
From the vibrant metropolis of Buenos Aires, take the ferry across the mouth of the Rio de la Plata to the historic centre of Colonia del Sacramento in just an hour. Yet it's a world of difference. Here in Colonia, it seems like you're back in the 17th century. Walk through the streets paved with uneven cobblestones. Around you see an interesting mix of Portuguese and Spanish low buildings and only the 'Faro', the lighthouse, stands out here like a landmark. It is highly recommended to climb this lighthouse and enjoy the beautiful view over the colonial centre at the top. In Colonia you can have a great time at one of the many terraces.
2. Have lunch on the market in Montevideo
Not only in Argentina you can enjoy a good steak and a matching red wine, also the Uruguayans know what good food is. We were advised to have lunch in Mercado del Puerto, the market hall in the harbour of Montevideo. Around noon all the office staff from the city meet here to have an extensive lunch. The old hall is full of restaurants, the sound of people chattering is deafening and from afar you can already smell the meat on the barbecue. Every stand has its own large Parilla (barbecue) which is full of different kinds of meat, sausages and large red peppers. Together with a good red wine this is not to be missed. As far as I'm concerned, this is the way to eat a good steak.
3. Horseriding on an estancia
Outside the cities, Uruguay is very sparsely populated. The country has many Estancia's where you can stay and experience the real farm life. Horseback riding is very popular here and, in my opinion, this should not be missing on a trip through Uruguay. Take a horseback ride through the Uruguayan countryside and imagine yourself to be a real gaucho. The Carmelo region, which is known for its high-quality wines, is perfect for this. An estancia we love is the Narbona Wine lodge. An experienced gaucho takes you on a beautiful trip through the area and the rest of the day you can enjoy the real Uruguayan country life. Tip: the estancia has a great restaurant!
4. Cabo Polonio
One of the most special places I have visited in Uruguay is the coastal town of Cabo Polonio. This place is situated in the dunes of a natural park and is further closed off from the outside world. You can only reach this old fishing village, which is characterized by the lighthouse, the gigantic colony of sea lions and a single supermarket, on foot or by all-terrain vehicle. The surroundings are great; right on the beach and everywhere you look you can see the dunes. Rest and relaxation prevail here, and in the evening, you will enjoy the best starry sky you will ever see.
5. Barefoot Luxury on the beach
I prefer to take a trip along the coast and I'm certainly not the only one. Uruguay is an excellent destination for this, the country has beautiful coastal towns. One of the most popular seaside resorts is Punta del Este. This city is also called the Saint Tropez of South America. Here you will find luxurious summer residences, an entertaining boulevard with palm trees and in the water are huge yachts. Good restaurants and busy outdoor cafes make this place a pleasant place in summer. It will therefore not surprise you that many cultural events are organized here, such as the international Jazz festival and various large exhibitions.
Are you looking for something a little quieter and simpler? Then the village of José Ignacio is a nice beach destination to end your trip through Uruguay. In José Ignacio you will find the so-called 'barefoot luxury'. The locals are very friendly and there is a nice relaxed atmosphere. You can relax in the beautiful surroundings, while you are never far away from a good glass of wine. Enjoy a sophisticated dinner at one of the high-quality restaurants and unwind by the pool near the hotel while a fresh cocktail is waiting for you. It's a fine soft break from the vibrant, stressful city life.
Would you like to make a trip through Uruguay yourself and are you curious about the possibilities? Then take a look at the travel itineraries that we have put together for inspiration. You can book these trips directly, but we are also happy to create a personal programme based on your wishes and ideas.
Do you have a question? Feel free to contact us. Call +31 73 610 62 04 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We are happy to help.