Uruguay: The Best and Worst

Haven’t had one of these in awhile! Check out past round ups here.

Total Days in Uruguay: 7

Total Days it Didn’t Rain: 5 (getting better percentage wise!)

Amount Spent: $550

Amount Per Day: $78.70 (good lord! This includes a $120 ferry ride but still, Uruguay is expensive!)

Jose San Ignacio outside of Punta del Este

Places Visited: Colonia del Sacramento, Montevideo, Punta del Este, Punta del Diablo

Favorite Place: I thought Montevideo was a great city, kind of like a smaller, cleaner Buenos Aires. Punta del Diablo is how I imagine Montanita was ten years ago.

Least Favorite Place: I didn’t dislike anywhere but I didn’t really get the hype on Colonia. I mean sure you can take a day trip from BA to see it, but don’t get too excited about it.

Road trip

Most Memorable Moments: Cabo Polonio was a major highlight. Eating utterly amazing asado at a backyard BBQ in Montevideo. Drunkenly skinny-dipping in Punta del Diablo (shhh).

Best Meal: I’m a healthy carnivore but the asado here blew even Argentina out of the water. Slow cooked and salted just right, I would go back to Montevideo right now just for some more yummy meat.

Worst Meal: It wasn’t terrible but I couldn’t really get on board with the chivito, a popular Uruguayan sandwich which is basically a bunch of stuff shoved on a plate: bread, french fries, steak, cheese, ham, eggs, olives, peppers etc. Heart attack plate.

Biggest Misconception: I don’t know that there are many misconceptions about Uruguay because nobody seems to pay it any attention what so ever. I did learn a lot of new things about the country .

Biggest Disaster: Getting our rental car stuck in the sand and needing to be bailed out by some local kite surfers. Later that afternoon we drove 2 hours down the WRONG dirt road and had to run around.

Best Sunset: Tough call. I think maybe this one in Colonia.

Most Annoying Thing: They have different wall outlets in Uruguay which I wasn’t expecting. Make sure you have the right adapters.

Biggest Regret: That we didn’t have longer with the rental car. I wouldn’t have minded vegging out in Punta del Diablo for a few days.

Best Advice: Take the time to see more than Colonia, Uruguay has a lot to offer. Bring your bathing suit. Rent a car. And don’t skimp on the meat!

Coolest Animal Spotted: We saw pretty much all varieties of farm animals but my favorite creature was this imperious looking beach owl.

Would I come back? Yes. I think the coast is a great place for a relaxing vacation and I’m curious about the interior of the country which I know absolutely nothing about.

Have you been to Uruguay? What were your impressions?




15 Responses to Uruguay: The Best and Worst

  1. Katherine McKeon March 27, 2012 at 9:43 AM #

    Interesting to read about your impressions of Uruguay – I especially liked the part that there are few misconceptions because no one really talks much about it. Glad you enjoyed your trip!

  2. Nathalia March 27, 2012 at 9:53 AM #

    The little town founded by the Portuguese is called Colonia de Sacramento, not Colonia de Santiago.

    • Steph March 27, 2012 at 10:59 AM #

      oops! I’ve fixed the error.

  3. Camels & Chocolate March 27, 2012 at 10:00 AM #

    I totally dig round-up/recap posts like this! And I’ve always been oddly intrigued by Uruguay, so thanks for sharing.

    That owl is amazing!

  4. Dalene March 27, 2012 at 12:10 PM #

    I am one of the Colonia-hype-people. LOVED IT. And I can’t even say why really, I just loved the vibe of the place. In fact, we even started looking at real estate ads. For realsies.

  5. Amanda March 27, 2012 at 12:13 PM #

    You’re so right that you don’t usually hear people talking about Uruguay much – I’m loving learning more about it from you!

  6. Andi of My Beautiful Adventures March 27, 2012 at 12:31 PM #

    Haha I LOVE Colonia. I just think if you spend a good deal of time in BA it’s just the perfect weekend escape from the big city. So romantic and enchanting!

  7. Lina March 27, 2012 at 2:16 PM #

    I love your recap posts! Makes me want to make S. America my next destination (but I’m still not over S.E. Asia!).

  8. Rapid Travel Chai March 28, 2012 at 10:01 AM #

    Useful in my planning to decide if I should spend my one-day Montevideo flight layover in Montevideo or try to make it to Colonia. I have been disappointed before by cookie-cutter colonial towns so probably will skip Colonia.

    • Steph March 28, 2012 at 10:16 AM #

      I think you’ll get more out of your day just exploring Montevideo. Colonia would be a 2.5 hour bus ride each way.

  9. Caro from Passport and a Toothbrush March 28, 2012 at 5:15 PM #

    I’d suggest checking out Piriapolis, Maldonado and Casa Pueblo for some great seaside arty spots. Also, March is THE perfect time to go to the Fiesta de la Patria Gaucha in Tacuarembo (up north) where it’s a festival to celebrate gaucho culture (Uruguayan cowbows if you will). You’re bound to find very few tourists and a great, genuine country experience. But hey, I’m Uruguayan so I may be a bit biased ; ) Glad you went!!

  10. Rease April 1, 2012 at 9:14 PM #

    I agree about Colonia, though my dislike for it is much stronger due to the fact that I had to go there for visa runs. Uruguay is very expensive! I liked Montevideo, I’ve never seen Punte del Diablo but a family I worked for vacations in Jose Ignacio. If I would have stayed in BA for 2 months longer, I would have been there with them. Damn it!

  11. Fede April 2, 2012 at 1:02 AM #

    Shame on you! Chivito is the best thing in Uruguay!

    A proudly uruguayan guy.
    Of course 🙂

  12. a&b April 3, 2012 at 9:44 PM #

    Cabo Polonio was one of my favorite places in Uruguay as well!! Love your blog/ excited to have another travel blog to look at!

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