Welcome to Uruguay, welcome to the land of Atlantic beach resorts, tango music, rare flamingoes, roadside queseria and glittering exclusive nightclubs. This pint sized county was South America’s well kept secret allowing only a small number of tourists to visit it and enjoy its pristine environment. But with time word spread about this charming treat which in turn bought tourists in huge droves.
The Charrua Indians were the original inhabitants of Uruguay until the Spanish arrived here in the 17th century and made Montevideo as their capital. It was not until 1828 that Uruguay became an independent country but peace from riots, coups and civil wars was restored not till 1903. But this tranquility paid price to the guerilla movement which was finally squashed by 1972 to reinstate calm and peace in the country.
With almost 500 km of gorgeous un-interrupted coastline along the Atlantic the country of Uruguay is famous for the number of beaches it has to offer. It had nine sandy beaches for bathing amongst others. The Uruguayan Riviera along with its cluster of beach town is the real crowd pullers. Also worth visiting are the chocolate brown freshwater beaches of Colonia del Sacramento.
Settled by the Portuguese it is Uruguay’s oldest city and is also recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Water sport enthusiasts will never run out of fun options at the beaches in Punta del Este which offers activities like water skiing, yachting, parasailing, boating and surfing. Easily available villas and chalets can be rented here to provide all the comfort with modern amenities as desired. For peace and solace seekers the modest seaside village of Aguas Dulces is the perfect spot to spend some time in. The capital city of Montevideo is a mix of European, colonial and modern architecture melting into each other in perfect harmony. The centre of the city boasts of the Plaza Independencies having the statue of the country’s hero on top of the famous Mausoleo de Artigas. The way into the old city is led through the Puerta de la Ciudadela or the “Door to Citadel”. Surrounded by sea is the small old inner city called the Ciudad Vieja which with its amazing antique shops is any antique lover’s dream come true.
A ride on a hydrofoil would enable you to witness the old time Swiss charm in Colonia Suiza. Not to be missed for anything is the energetic, energy oozing, thumping and lively Ash Wednesday which is Uruguay’s carnival. This fun filled event showcases the real ever present vibrancy in a whole new spectrum. Surrounded by two lagoons is the bird watchers zone in the Jose Ignacio area. Capable of being explored on foot or on a bicycle this wilderness amongst other native birds is a treat to view the flamingoes. The breathtaking view in the town of Minas provided by magnificently covered lush green hills are also worth admiring and capturing.
Though small and not well known, there is nothing which the country of Uruguay does not have on offer to please any genre of tourists visiting it. The only thing desired is a visit.