Psssst, the rumor is that Uruguay is the most-overlooked country in South America. Why you ask? Well for starters, it is a small country nestled along the coastline in between Brazil and Argentina. The landscape is breathtaking, beaches are plentiful and has a political system that is regarded far more liberal then its neighboring South American countries. If you are planning an extended trip through South America, or are just interested in bopping over Uruguay for a week or two, below are a few highlights you may want to consider before your adventure:
When to travel
Uruguay boasts a mild, temperate climate that is conducive to traveling at any time of the year. Tourism however, is said to spike in the summer months, (January through March) due to a popular carnival called EFAM that takes over the entire country. The carnival itself involves lively dancing with an origin in both African and European descent. The carnival can last up to 40 days and is celebrated with grandiose costumes, “candombe drums” and musical parades that celebrate , impersonate, and mock politics, people, and human nature. If you are into this type of cultural pandemonium plan to visit during the summer months. If you don’t want to be bothered by crowds, opt to travel to travel during the months of April through September, when the climate is somewhat less humid and tourism is slow.
Located on the northern coast of the country, Uruguay’s capital city enjoys a colonial setting, a rich cultural history, and is said to be one of the safest cities to travel in South America. Based upon first impression, Uruguayans seem passive, but in actuality are lovely, kind and warm-hearted people, and if you ask for directions or advice are more than willing to offer a helping hand. There are plenty of things to do around the city, such as visiting the Feria de Tristán Navaja, a vibrant Sunday market, book a private wine tour, or break for tea (a Uruguayan tradition) at a culturally artistic café.
Punta del Este
This bustling, slightly touristy beach and resort town that has a spectacular coastline of golden beaches, popular fishing spots, and a nightlife that comes alive after the sun disappears below the horizon. The architecture is a mix of colonial buildings mixed with contemporary architecture. If you are looking to catch some waves, hang with a hybrid of locals and tourists, and maybe bet a few pesos at the local casino, this is the place to go.
Have you been to Uruguay? Where do you recommend?